Dollybird Edge Through In Tight Game At The Bluebell

Both sides only met last month at Planters Park where DFC ran out easy winners but this was a totally different game this time round in Lisburn.

Having said that it was DFC who should have settled the nerves in the opening few minutes when Ryan Gourley played in Richy Thompson who unselfishly set up Aaron Duke but the big man failed to convert at the back post and the keeper pushed his shot away for a corner.

Most of the remainder of the first half was a fairly even affair with limited clear-cut chances to either side but at the start of the second half after the mercurial Glenn Hand was fouled and Duke stepped forward to fire low and hard into the bottom corner to open the scoring.

Then the same player combined well with Thompson again but the keeper brought off a good save and then on the hour mark a great cross from Josh Norton on the left was uncharacteristically headed wide by that man Duke again and few minutes later DFC were undone when a cross from the right-wing was miskewed by skipper Aaron Moffett at the near post and flew over a Stephen Croft into the net.

Manager Uprichard then made 3 substitutions in an effort to claim all three points with Stephen Jones, Gourley and Chris Coleman making way for Marty Hughes , Nathan McConnell and Davy Gray and this had the desired effect in the final few minutes when Duke headed home the winner at the near post from a corner.

This was a massive 3 points in the battle for the title with nearest challengers both winning convincingly and yet another mammoth match next week awaits away to neighbours Tandragee Rovers.

Double Hattrick Duke Sets Up Hill Street 1/4 Final

DFC made the trip on a very wet day to second division Newmills in the Marshall Cup and progressed to the next round with a comfortable 8-1 score line with Aaron Duke getting 6 of the goals.

Richy Thompson settled any nerves in first couple of minutes when he followed up on a blocked shot from Duke to open the scoring and Andy McMath who has been on a recent run of goals tried his luck but his effort was cleared off the line and Ryan Gourley should have added the second but shot wide.

Duke headed in his first from a Glenn Hand corner and his second followed good pass by Josh Norton and same players combined for his hat trick before Newmills got a goal back which they deserved for hard work right on half time.

Any chance of a comeback were denied at the start of the second half when Thompson turned provider again for Duke to tap in his fourth and same player scored soon afterwards after quick taken free kick.

Then Duke completed his second hat trick of the day with a cheeky lob over the keeper and substitute Mary Hughes wrapped up the victory in final few minutes after himself and Nathan Lavery and Cathel DeBrun replaced Hand , McMath and Gourley.

 

Dollingstown will now take on Hill Street in a local derby 1/4 Final in April.