Newtown made the short trip to the Convent Lands on Saturday morning looking for the 3 points that could possibly win the NECSL 16's Premier League for them. They got of to a flyer racing into a 2-0 lead within the opening 12 minutes after some very poor defending by the home team.
This really shook Rovers and they just couldn't get into their stride and create any real chances while at the other end Mark Kieran's in Carrick's goal had his work cut out to keep the score down. As the half went on Newtown poured forward looking to add to the score and made it 3-0 just before the halftime whistle.
After some harsh truths at the interval this Rovers side went out looking to restore some pride in themselves but after another defensive mix-up they gifted the visitors a fourth and all looked lost. At this stage the game looked as if it was a matter of how many Newtown would score as they threatened every time they had the ball. Rovers just couldn't get anything going and all looked lost until David Wilson rolled up his sleeves and drove the rest of his team-mates on. After 55 minutes he linked up well with Patrick Larney in midfield before releasing Stephen Cunningham wide on the right with his back to goal. The big striker did brilliant to get turned and take on and beating his marker before wiping in a great cross which Wilson calmly side-footed into the corner of the net from just inside the box. 5 minutes later Rovers won a free-kick just inside the Newtown half. Ryan Carolan delivered a great ball to the edge of the area where Wilson rose to flick the ball on and Gary McElroy raced into flash a sweetly struck half volley passed the keeper. Rovers had all the play now and Patrick Larney was coming more and more into the game. In the 66 minute his ball wide found Aaron Jones who took on 2 players and raced to the byline but his cross was blocked for a corner.Cian Matthews came up from the back and swung in a great cross which Wilson again rose to hammer the ball to the roof of the net. Game on. Conor Duffy came on and Rovers went with 3 at the back with nothing to lose. They bombarded the Newtown goal, with Padraig Marron driving a good effort just wide and Cunningham forcing a good save from the keeper. From another attack they forced another corner and again Matthews delivery was good but Duffy couldn't keep his headed effort under the bar and Newtown held out to claim the victory.
Full-Time Carrick Rovers 3-4 Newtown
Team Mark Kieran's, Ryan Carolan, Ian Martin, David Wilson, Cian Matthews, Aaron Jones, Patrick Larney, Padraig Marron, Andrew Butler, Stephen Cunningham, Daniel McDonald, Stephen Lynagh, Kevin Quinn, Gary McElroy, Connor Duffy and Liam McGeough.
No points but heads held high and lessons learned.