Football: Campbell on target for improving 18th Newtownabbey
KILROOT Rec drop down from third to fourth in the Amateur League’s Division 1C after being held to a 1-1 draw at Wilbourne Park by improving neighbours 18th Newtownabbey Old Boys.
It was only Kilroot’s second home league game of the campaign, and what a different story it was from 18th’s last visit to the Island, where they were hammered 10-1 in the final match of last season. However, as 18th manager Paul Cargill recalled: “That was our last game of the season and we were struggling – we ended up with a few third-teamers on! This season, we’ve got a bigger squad, and we’re definitely moving in the right direction. There has been a big improvement, too, since Johneen Black started taking the coaching sessions on Thursday night. It has definitely helped us!
“Our ‘keeper Johnny Chambers had a brilliant game, but their keeper had a few good saves as well, and we could have won it in the second-half!”
Bearing in mind the memories of their last visit, things looked ominous for 18th inside the opening minute when Andrew Dummigan raced through with only ‘keeper Chambers to beat, only to completely lose his sense of direction, with his shot fizzing well wide.
Joel Lough, on the other hand, has his sights better set on eight minutes, only to be denied by a fine save from Chambers.
Instead, it was the Monkstown side who opened the scoring on 22 minutes; left-back Neil Campbell providing the composed finish, sidestepping two defenders before slipping the ball wide of keeper Dean Haggan to apply the finishing touch to a well-worked move, practically the whole length of the pitch.
Kilroot would have scrubbed that one out on 36 minutes had Lough not once more been deprived by the agility of Chambers.
The second-half seemed to follow the same script, with Thomas Ogilvie’s thudding header, from a Lough cross, kept out by Chambers.
Ogilvie had another headed effort saved, before Kilroot finally restored parity on 56 minutes; David Gibb stealing in at the back post to nod in a Dummigan cross.
Two minutes later, Ogilvie had an effort ruled out for a foul on the ‘keeper.
Newtownabbey came more into the picture as the half progressed, and could have grabbed all three points but for a top-drawer save from Haggan, somehow diverting a point-blank effort from one-time Barn man, Peter Waugh, onto the bar.
Then, just before the close, Michael Jamison just failed to get a touch to substitute Ian Irvine’s tempting right-wing cross.
On Saturday (October 15), Kilroot are again on their travels, away to bottom club Civil Service, while 18th return to Cloyne Crescent for the visit of Iveagh United.