Northend United 5 Chimney Corner 4 Saturday 22nd February 2020
Northend United U14s continued their league campaign in windy conditions against Chimney Corner at Barbour. Northend, playing with the benefit of the strong wind in the first half, started strongly and deservedly took the lead courtesy of a neat Paidin Mitchell goal. Northend however were playing with confidence and struck again from an unlikely source when centre half Conor Wilson got the faintest of touches to a wicked Conan McKeown corner. Wilson clearly had a eye for goal and following a pinpoint cross from the impressive Dan Patterson, he stroked home his second to make it 3:0. Following a disappointing mix up in the Northend defence Chimney Corner pulled one back against the run of play. However, Northend kept on pressing and scored a fourth before half time when top scorer Kurtis Adger got in on the act. Half time 4-1
Playing with the strong wind, Chimney Corner showed much more in attack from the start of the second period. However, it would be Northend who would strike next when Mitchell netted his second of the game to put the Ballymena side 5:1 up and seemingly out of sight. Chimney Corner were not yet finished and helped by the strong wind and some sloppy Northend defending they pulled 3 goals back to produce a nervous last 10 minutes for the Northend boys. However, this team have showed a steely determination to see out games this season and led by captain and Man of the Match Lewis Devlin, they held off the Chimney Corner comeback to secure another precious 3 points and maintain their position hot on the heels of Warrenpoint and Cliftonville at the top of the table. Full time 5-4
Man of the Match: Lewis Devlin
Panel: T Hasson, D Patterson, C Wilson, L Devlin(c) C Hendron, C McKeown, C McAuley, E Hejno, P Mitchell, E Pirie, K Adger, T. Gillan, C. Reid, K. Corcoran and O. Stinson
Northend United 3 Oxford Sunnyside 1 Saturday 8th February 2020
Northend's unbeaten start to the New Year continued with this laboured victory over a well organised and much improved Oxford Sunnyside. The young Blues were nervy for much of the first half and the normal composed passing game that has been evident for much of this season was strangely absent. Time and again they found themselves in attacking positions only for the final ball to go astray. Midway through the half they did find a way through the well-marshalled Oxford defence and the hard-working Paidin Mitchell finished off clinically to put Northend ahead. Half-time 1-0
The familiar pattern of play continued at the beginning of the second half with Northend enjoying much of the possession without creating any chances. With half an hour to go Northend brought on substitute Caelyn Clarke and this brought renewed energy to the Northend attack. Within 10 minutes Clarke got Northend's second goal with a simple finish in the six yard box and then soon after he showed his shooting power by hitting a venomous shot from 15 yards out which gave the Oxford keeper absolutely no chance.
This should have been enough to demoralise the Oxford team but they kept fighting to get something from the game and were rewarded with a consolation goal 5 minutes from the end - a great strike which was no more than they deserved from this game. Full-time 3-1
Man of the Match: Caelyn Clarke
Panel: T Hasson, D Patterson, C Wilson, L Devlin, C Hendron, T Gillen, C McAuley, O Stinson, C Reid, E Pirie, P Mitchell, C Clarke, K Corcoran.
Northend United 5 Lurgan Town 4 Saturday 1st February 2020
Northend United U14s continued their league campaign with a wind affected match against fierce rivals Lurgan Town at Wallace Park. The Northend boys, missing several regulars, playing with the benefit of the strong wind in the first half took the game to Lurgan Town. The Ballymena boys went deservedly in front early doors courtesy of Kurtis Adger. However, the much fancied Lurgan Town attack was keeping the Northend defence on their toes and they deservedly equalised mid-way through the half. Northend however were playing with confidence with Adger and Paidin Mitchell in particular causing the Lurgan defence all sorts of problems. It came as no surprise when Mitchell struck twice with confident finishes to leave Northend two goals to the good at half time. Half time 3-1
Playing with the strong wind it came as no surprise when Lurgan Town came out to attack. The Northend defence, well marshalled by Conor Wilson were under extreme pressure and despite a brave rear-guard action conceded two well taken goals to level the scores at 3:3. The game was very even at this stage with both sides struggling to adapt to the elements but showing a willingness to attack on all opportunities. It was to be Lurgan who would score next to lead for the first time. However, this Northend team do not know when they are beaten and the introduction of Erik Hejno and Caelyn Clarke from the bench was to prove decisive when Clarke's speculative shot beat the Lurgan keeper to level the scores. Not content with the draw, Northend pushed for a winner which duly arrived late in the game when Clarke powered his way to the bye line before crossing for Adger to bundle home his second goal to seal an unlikely but well deserved win. Man of the Match was Conor Wilson for a calm and commanding performance at the heart of the Northend defence against a strong Lurgan attack. Full time 5-4
Man of the Match: Conor Wilson
Panel: T Hasson, D Patterson, C Wilson, C Hendron, C McKeown, O Stinson, C McAuley, T Gillan, P Mitchell, E Pirie(c), K Adger, C Clarke, E Hejno
Northend United 8 Hillsborough Boys 2 Saturday 25th january 2020
Northend United U14s blew away the Christmas cobwebs with a convincing win over Hillsborough Colts in what was their first match since winning the Supplementary Cup on 28th December. In what was a sometimes disjointed performance, Northend conceded first from the penalty spot after a Hillsborough player was upended in the box. This served to shock the Ballymena boys into action and following some better passing play, Kurtis Adger deservedly equalised. This goal steadied the ship and with confidence and a better final ball, the chances started to flow. Paidin Mitchell with two well taken strikes and Adger with his second, scored again in the first half to effectively kill the game off as a contest. Half time 4-1
The pattern of the first half continued with Northend creating chances and the defence again excellently led by captain Lewis Devlin, coping with everything Hillsborough had to offer. It came as no surprise when Kurtis Adger completed his hat-trick, scoring for the 29th time in a remarkable season. With Northend threatening all over the pitch, Conan McKeown stepped up from left back to beat the keeper at his near post to make it 6-1. After being introduced from the bench, Caelyn Clarke was causing the Hillsborough defence all sorts of problems and was rewarded with a goal, his team's seventh. Hillsborough never gave up and were rewarded with a second consolation goal. However it would be Northend who would have the final say and with virtually the last kick of the ball, Oliver Stinson scored an eight to cap an impressive debut. Joint Men of the Match were Lewis Devlin and Daniel Patterson who stood out in a typically solid Northend defence. Full time 8-2
Men of the Match: Lewis Devlin and Daniel Patterson.
Panel: T Hasson, D Patterson, C Wilson, L Devlin(c), C McKeown, C McAuley, C Reid, T Gillen, P Mitchell, E Pirie and K Adger, C Clarke, K Corcoran and O Stinson