Saturday saw the last Bluefin Sport Premier Intermediate League (PIL) games in 2019 take place as three games went ahead and there were no fewer than 16 goals scored, so I’ll be looking back on all the talking points from the weekend.
Annagh v Armagh was the fourth game on Saturday but with Annagh leading 1-0 through a Jackson Holmes strike, the game was abandoned in the 79th minute after a spectator collapsed. The entire team here at Over the Turnstile wishes the supporter a full and speedy recovery.
Portstewart 4-4 Limavady United
Johnny Law’s Portstewart side went into this game as the only PIL side still unbeaten in the league this season, so they must have been scratching their heads when goals from Dean Brown and Sean McCarron had the lowly Roesiders 2-0 up after the first 15 minutes.
The home side recovered from this early setback and goals from Mark Edgar and the experienced John Watt levelled things up before the break.
In the second half, Portstewart took the lead twice through Edgar and Lee Forgrave but were pegged back first by Hugh Carlin, and then in the last minute of the game, Ryan Doherty scored to salvage a point for the visitors.
Despite dropping points Law’s men still managed to climb onto the top of the table in time for Christmas, moving ahead of Annagh on goal difference in the push for promotion to the Championship, and Mark Clyde’s United side remain in 8th place.
Moyola Park 3-0 Tobermore United
Tobermore are one of two sides that find themselves without a league win this season and Adrian Whiteside’s side will be happy that there is no relegation from the PIL this season.
Moyola won this derby game with ease as goals from Conor Taggart and an in-form Chris Dowie put them 2-0 up at the break and a further second-half goal from talismanic striker Tiarnan Rafferty wrapped up the win.
Moyola have now moved up two spots to 7th in the league and Tobermore remain stuck at the bottom of the pile.
Dollingstown 5-1 Banbridge Town
Dollingstown continued their strong season so far on Saturday against the other winless side in the league as they brushed Stuart King’s Banbridge team aside with absolute ease.
Keith Johnston was in sparkling form on Saturday as he opened the scoring for the home side and then set up the second and third goals for Richard Thompson and Nathan McConnell respectively, all in the first 45 minutes of the game.
The Dollybirds had to wait until the 79th minute to add further to their tally but goal number four came via Thompson and Gary Liggett completed the scoring for the home team with Jack McCreanor pulling one back.
The full PIL table after Saturday’s games currently looks like this:
There are no games in the PIL this weekend but the division returns again on Saturday 4th January with the following two games taking place at 15:00:
Armagh City v Portstewart
Limavady United v Tobermore United