Loughgall 0 Northend United 3 NIBFA Plate Quarter-Final Saturday 10th March 2018
Northend started brightly in this quarter-final match played in Portadown and from the whistle pressed the home team and put them under pressure. With Northend winning the first and second balls and playing some lovely passing football, Lewis McDonald and Robert Crooks had shots well saved by the Loughgall keeper. Then on the 9th minute, Charlie McIlhatton beat his man and hit a wonder strike into the top corner, giving the Loughgall keeper no chance. As the Northend boys kept pressing, on 20th minute Crooks was brought down in the penalty box, but the referee saw otherwise. Still Northend kept knocking on the door and Loughgall defending for their life. Calvin Termania sent a great ball across the box from a corner but none of the Blues players could get a touch on it. Loughgall had one shot that didn't trouble Dylan Glass in the Blues nets. Half time 0-1
The second half was more of the same with Charlie McIlhatton, Robert Crooks and Lewis McDonald winning every ball and bringing their wingers into play and getting in behind the Loughgall defence. McIlhatton was on top form winning every tackle and then driving into space. Crooks turned provider when he delivered a great ball into the box from a corner were Calvin Termania scored with a great header.
Northend began to ring the changes with McDonald dropping into centre midfield and Jackson Greer on in the striking role. Northend continued to put more pressure on Loughgall as McDonald was playing great balls in behind their defence and Termania found himself one on one with the keeper, but he hesitated and the young Loughgall keeper got a hand to the ball.
Gary Kenny on right wing and was causing all sorts of problems for the Loughgall full-back. Loughgall keep kicking the ball long but the Northend defence of Daire Higgins, Mark Campbell and Peter Finnegan were their usual solid unit and just soaked up whatever Loughgall could throw at them. Mark Campbell was on top of his game but picked up a yellow for a great tackle were he clearly won the ball.
Northend put the game to bed with a third goal when McDonald played a lovely through ball with the laces to Calvin Termania, and he cut inside to hit a unstoppable shot which the keeper couldn't deal with it. Full time 0-3
This was an all-round solid performance from the Wee Blues, with keeper and defence never putting a foot wrong. McIlhatton, McDonald and Crooks were in commanding form through the spine and the speedy wingers caused all sorts of bother with their runs and crosses.
Man of the Match: Charlie McIlhatton
Panel: D Glass, D Higgins, P Finnegan, R Crooks, C Maguire, C McIlhatton, M Campbell. L McDonald, C Termonia, G Kenny, J Greer
Warrenpoint Town 0 Northend United 3 Saturday 24th February 2018
Northend travelled to Warrenpoint for this NIBFA last 16 match against the Irish League Academy side. Warrenpoint started the match strongly with Northend taking time to find their rhythm. Gradually Northend began to claw their way back into the match against a strong headwind and the Warrenpoint keeper was called upon a few times to keep them in the match. Half time 0-0
Into the second half and Northend made a few tactical changes with Robert Crooks into the attacking midfield role and Lewis McDonald moving onto the right wing. Thomas McLaughlin was introduced at centre forward to hold the ball up and let the Northend wingers get into the game. The Wee Blues came out hungry and determined. With some great passing play, Northend began to pick out some good through balls and causing the Warrenpoint defence all sorts of problems. On 30 minutes, Northend took the lead with Calvin Termonia side stepping two Warrenpoint players and hitting an unstoppable shot. On 38 minutes, Northend doubled their lead, when Robert Crooks passed the ball out to Lewis McDonald, who found Thomas McLaughlin down the wing. He shrugged off two players and fired across the Warrenpoint box where Calvin Termonia fired home. It was all Northend at this stage of the game and on 40 minutes, McLaughlin had a goal disallowed for offside.
Northend extended their lead on 45 minutes, when Calvin Termonia hit a lovely free-kick into the top corner of the Warrenpoint net. 3-0 to Northend and the well drilled Blues team saw out the remainder of the match in a super team performance by the whole squad. The Northend backline was solid throughout, winning their tackles and keeping their shape well. The midfield and strikers worked very hard for each other and created numerous chances. Full time 0-3
Man of the Match: Calvin Termonia
Panel: D Glass, D Higgins, M Campbell, P Finnegan, C Maguire, C McIlhatton, L McDonald, C Termonia, J Greer, G Kenny, R Crooks, T McLaughlin
Northend United 0 Banbridge Lions 3 Saturday 17th February 2018
Northend went into this match against League favourites and a big and strong Banbridge Lions team. There was very little between the teams but Banbridge just wanted the result that little bit more. Lewis McDonald working hard in midfield, breaking up the Banbridge play, and Jackson Greer working hard in the striker's role, feeding off scraps, but wasn't getting support from the Blues midfield. Banbridge scored midway through the half. Half time 0-1
Into the second half, and Northend came more into the game, with Calvin Termonia working very hard to get Northend back in the game. However, that wee bit of luck was missing on the day. Northend should have scored on two different occasions but it wasn't to be their day. Banbridge weather the Northend fightback and went on to add a second goal on the counter-attack. The Mid-Ulster side added a third goal on 48 minutes when they went on to score after it looked like the ball was clearly out of play. Dylan Glass made a couple of good saves towards the end of the game in what was the Wee Blues hardest match to date. Full time 0-3
Panel: D Glass, D Higgins, P Finnegan, R Crooks, C Maguire, C McIlhatton, M Campbell. L McDonald, C Termonia, G Kenny, T McLaughlin, J Greer, M Campbell
Northend United 1 Oxford Sunnyside 1 Saturday 27th January 2018
Northend were slow to start in this game and Oxford could have taken the lead in the opening minutes of the game. Eventually the Blues clawed their way back into this game and eventually took the lead on fifteen minutes when Clodagh Maguire hit a long range shot which deceived the Oxford keeper and give the Blues the lead. Oxford nearly equalised just before half time but Northend keeper Dylan Glass pulled off a good save. Half time 1-0
Into the second half and oxford continued to trouble the Northend goal, but found Dylan Glass having a good day. Oxford eventually drew level on 48 minutes but Northend put in a disciplined display to see out the end of the game Full time 1-1
Man of the Match: Dylan Glass
Panel: D Glass, D Higgins, R Crooks, C Maguire, C McIlhatton, M Campbell. L McDonald, C Termonia, J Greer, T McLaughlin, P Finnegan
Northend United 3 Warrenpoint Town 1 Saturday 13th January 2018
This was another solid performance from the Wee Blues after the winter break and against Irish League academy side, Warrenpoint Town. Northend hit the ground running with some great link up play from defence right through to the forwards. Warrenpoint could not break down the Northend defence, with their good shape and positioning. The Northend midfield were pulling the strings in this game, winning the balls and attacking with pace. Up top Jackson Greer was on top form, making great runs and stretching the Warrenpoint defence all over the pitch. Northend led at half time with Jackson Greer and Robert Crooks scoring and Warrenpoint getting one in reply. Half time 2-1
Into the second half and as the weather worsened, Northend kept making roll on, roll off substitutions. A number of players found themselves playing in different positions bit it did not faze them.
The Warrenpoint keeper was a busy man throughout the match as Jackson Greer added to his total with a well taken goal to seal a good win for the Northend boys and girl! Full time 3-1
Man of the Match: Robert Crooks - Showed his versatility with top performances in 3 different positions on the day
Panel: D Glass, D Higgins, M Campbell, R Crooks, C Maguire, C McIlhatton, L McDonald, C Termonia, J Greer, G Kenny, T McLaughlin, P Finnegan