Sports

Newry back to winning ways

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

A SUPER hat-trick from striker Mark McCabe helped Newry City return to winning ways at Dundela on Saturday, which put them right back into the title race.

Dundela ...2
Newry City Afc ...3

Newry took an early lead before conceding two quick goals after the break.

That scenario has become all too familiar to the Newry faithful but this time the boys rolled up their sleeves and built a winning lead before toughing out the final 15 minutes with 10 men.

Manager Darren Mullen was "delighted" to grab all three points and is hoping this win could put their poor run of form behind them.

“We've been on a poor run of late but the players have never dropped their heads and deserve great credit for turning this game around.

“Mark McCabe will rightly grab the headlines for his hat-trick especially for his second and third but as a team we worked so hard today.

“The coaching staff have continuously told the players that no matter what happens, if they continue to work hard they will get their rewards.

“Thankfully that happened today against a Dundela side who will take points off a lot of teams this season, especially at home.

“What we need to do now is take this confidence and work rate into the next game away to Queen's."

Newry City opened the scoring on 22 minutes when Mark McCabe contested a long ball on the edge of the Dundela penalty area. He was the first to react after Sergeant flapped at the bouncing ball and the Newry striker grabbed the opportunity to stroke the ball through Dundela defenders and into the net to give Newry the lead.

Dundela also had chances with Peter Murphy producing a fine save to turn a shot from Ben Roy around the post.

The final chance of the half came Newry's way as Murphy delivered a long kick out for Mark McCabe to win, knocking the ball down to Carville who was unfortunate to pull his shot wide of the far post.

The home side were quickly out of the blocks in the second half and soon had Newry on the back foot so much so that it looked only a matter of time until the equaliser came, a mixture of bad luck, bad finishing and an excellent save from Murphy kept the Newry goal intact.

However, the pressure had to tell and the equaliser duly arrived after 53 minutes. Roy was unfortunate when his effort smacked off the post but equally lucky that the rebound fell perfectly for Mark McCelland to drill the ball past Murphy.

With their tails up Dundela quickly went a goal up. McCelland set up Jamie Jackson some 25 yards from goal, the winger gave the Newry keeper little chance with a dipping shot which ripped into the top of the Newry net.

As they needed to do the Newry boys knuckled down in a bid to rescue the points. Indeed, the chance for the equaliser owed much to a strong 50-50 challenge from Carville outside the Dundela penalty area, with the ball breaking favourably for Mark McCabe.

The Newry marksman still had much to do but he made it look easy, nutmegging the first defender before shooting across Sergeant, the ball hit the far top corner of the Dundela goal for a precision finish.

Newry regained the lead on 65 minutes with a goal set up by the quick thinking of Thomas McCann.

His free kick, aimed to the feet of Carville on the edge of the penalty area, wasn't dealt with by Dundela and McCabe was once more alert to the chance as he latched onto the loose ball before firing an unstoppable shot high into the Dundela net to give Newry a 3-2 lead.

And that's how it stayed for the remaining 25 minutes despite Newry losing Decky Carville, who was sent off for successive yellow cards.

Newry now travel to play Queen's on Saturday (February 4), kick-off 3pm. Newry City travel club bus will leave The Stonebridge at 1.15pm.

NEWRY CITY AFC: Murphy, S McCabe, Mooney, Mullen, McKeown, Patton, McCann, Johnston, M McCabe, Carville, Hughes. Subs: Grant, Curran, Lowry, Walker, King.

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