A mixed performance from the Swifts on Saturday against Armagh Blues.
The Swifts were 4 up after 20 minutes of the game and in total control. Goal number one arrived with great link up play from Lewis McKinley to Niall McBride which Niall crossed for Simon Wilson to score with a well timed run. Lewis McKinley scored the second after he pounced of a defensive mistake. The 3rd goal came from a Lewis McKinley corner that was only cleared to Niall McBride which he scored with a super left foot finish. Next up was goal number four with Lewis McKinley playing a ball behind the defence for Callum Watkins to score with power past the keeper. However credit to Armagh Blues they threw caution to the wind as they put pressure on Lurgans defence. Adam Scorah, Dylan Hoy and Scott McBride were pretty much in control at the back and any time they were breached Josh Pugh was there to make good saves. Adam Leathem was having another excellent game along with Ryan Blacoe. Then from nowhere Scott scored an own goal.
The Swifts came under severe pressure from Armagh Blues in the second half as their experience against the young Swifts side was plain to see. Armagh went more route one which caused some panic in the Swifts defence. A second for Armagh came when Jack O’Neill was static at a corner as the Armagh player scored with a powering header. The third soon came when Lurgan had numerous chances to clear but the ball was played back in for another headed goal. At 4-3 Lurgan still attacked and really should have had 2 further goals but on both occasions Aaron Winters witness one shot saved and the other going wide. Armagh Blues then scored the equaliser from great play by their striker who was a handful all afternoon. He hit in a super cross to the only Armagh player in the penalty box which was finished well. Lurgan had introduced Tim Millen early in the half and with minutes left Tim collected the ball in his half and left a few players behind then played a pass to Callum Watkins who struck a ferocious shot that unfortunately hit the crossbar.
The game finished with a fair 4-4 draw. The Swifts will be disappointed to throw away a 4 goal lead but Armagh Blues deserve credit for not giving up. The Swifts were scintillating for 20 minutes but inexperience ultimately cost them the win. It’s a learning curve for the young Swifts team and they will continue to learn and develop. There were good games for the majority of the squad with 12 players 19 and under. Lewis, Simon, Blacoe, Ryan S, Adam L and Niall all played well despite being involved with for the U19s in the morning but player of the match was Adam Scorah.