There was no joy for either of our local sides in Saturday’s Clarence Cup ties.
Although Barn United have taken the Premier scalps of Malachians and Crumlin United on home turf this season, it was third time ‘unlucky’ as visitors Downpatrick edged through on a 2-1 scoreline.
Barn boss Tommy Kincaid told the Times: “In the first half we gave them too much respect; we didn’t believe in ourselves enough. But we had them under pressure for most of the second half. We were super but just didn’t get the breaks. And their winner was controversial; our boys insist the ball was knocked out of keeper Dean Haggan’s hands. We also had a good penalty shout turned down.”
Andy Kane scrubbed out Downpatrick’s first-half opener and Barn had their chances, such as an effort from Matt McDonald and two headers from Kane that, on another day, might have gone in. But in the end it was ‘Patrick’s Day!
Out, too, go 18th Newtownabbey, beaten 3-1 at home to Division 2A side Woodvale.
18th’s joint-manager Mark Miskimmin said: “I’ve no complaints. Woodvale were the better team on the day. From back to front, we were poor. It was just one of those days where we couldn’t have played worse if we tried!”
Neil McGrath did scrub out Woodvale’s opener but there was another serious set-back for 18th just before half time when Mark Marshall broke his leg in an accidental collision.
Woodvale regained their lead on the hour, copper-fastening their place in the next round with a third on 80 minutes. Eighteenth finished with 10 men, after Robbie-Lee Crawford was shown a second yellow three minutes from time.
Rathfern Rangers play their round four tie at Bangor Swifts on March 26.