Friday, 15 February 2019 at 11:29 PM Joe Hegarty
Ten weeks had passed since the footballers of Owen Roe's and Stewartstown last saw competitive action as Tyrone’s extended Championship run ensured that the ACL fixtures were in neutral for a period of time. Both sides went head to head in east Tyrone on Sunday and it was the home side that showed less signs of rustiness to grab the spoils.
Conditions underfoot were perfect for both sides but a fierce wind blowing down the field made conducive football tricky. Owen Roe's played into the gale in the opening period and found scoring difficult to come by.
It took Ronan McNulty to open the scoring after 9 minutes with an effort following good work by Davy Harte. MacCauley Quinn replied for The Harps but the Leckpatrick side were doing all the running. However a mixture of good goalkeeping, poor finishing, ill luck and brave defending ensured that Owen Roe's reward for their good approach play would be minimal.
Stewartstown were also finding the conditions a handul but James Kelly 0-2 and Quinn gave them the lead. Conall McCormick replied for the Roe's before the break.
Ryan McShane boomed over a 45 early in the 2nd period as Owen Roe's commenced the second half shading possession again. Scores again were at a premium and it looked like a goal would be critical. Dan Lowe clipped over for Stewartstown before Kelly judged a high ball wall to fist to the Leckpatrick goal to put his side well in charge.
The visitors though, chasing a play off spot, didn’t yield easy, with captain Brendan Boggs leading the charge with an effort from distance.
This score lifted the away side and further points from McCormick, Conor O’Neill and another Boggs’ point brought Owen Roe's within range.
Stephen Harper knocked over a placed kick late in the game as the home side pushed hard to ensure their journey east yielded something for their efforts. However the home team broke in added time to convert a much needed insurance point to take the points.
Owen Roe's: Andy Devine, Sean Dooher, Stephen Kelly, Gerard Devine, Gerard McShane, Conall McCormick (0-2), Davy Harte, Tony Devine, Seamus Dooher, Ryan McShane (0-1), Ryan McAleer, Ronan McNulty (0-1), Conor O’Neill (0-1), Brendan Boggs (0-2), Stephen Harper (0-1).
Subs: Conor Donaghey for Harte (33 mins), Ryan ‘Ricki’ Devine for Ryan McShane (44 mins), Niall McAleer for Ronan McNulty (50 mins), Ronan Parker for McCormick (58 mins), Sean McBride for Sean Dooher (59 mins)