The U19s unbeaten run came to an end with a heavy defeat against a Cookstown team with the bulk of players a year older. There were many deciding factors on Saturday but not excuses as the best team won on the day. Lurgan went into the game with 4 players unavailable, 5 players arrived 10 minutes before kick off plus a local ref that was pretty much only seeing things one way. This was apparent with Cookstown’s first goal when their striker was 3 yards offside but was allowed to continue and score. This put Lurgan on the back foot and lacking confidence and composure. In fact two more goals soon followed due to mistakes especially in defence also the midfield 3 were getting outplayed and outmuscled by the Cookstown midfield. Cookstown were creating on a regular basis but Adam Craig was in superb form. Adam kept the score to only 3 down in the first half. Lurgan did have a few half chances with Alex Woods being Lurgan’s standout player in the first half. Alex setup Aaron Winters to score but his shot was straight at the keeper.
Lurgan came out with a little more fight in the second half and created more scoring opportunities with Alex Woods, Andy McIvor and Rivaldo Teggart going close. Lurgan eventually got on the scoresheet when Lewis McKinley crossed to Jack Evans who struck a shot across the goal that Andy McIvor deflected in for his third goal in 3 matches. Despite Lurgan’s improved performance they conceded 2 late goals through more errors in defence.
Lurgan knew they would come up against teams of this ability in the league so it was no surprise in that aspect but the surprise was the poor performance overall from the players. The only players to come out with credit were Alex Woods, Timmy Millen and player of the match Adam Craig who made numerous saves that included a world class save in the second half. The players need to refocus for the games coming up and move on from this particular performance.