Reserves exit the Junior Cup
Despite exiting the Fonacab Junior Cup in the third round, our young Reserves can be extremely proud of their performance in this historic fixture.
Town started the game the stronger with goalkeeper Joshua Brownlee called to make several good stops, however as the half wore on the Reserves grew in confidence and were causing their opposition some trouble with their pace on the counter attack.
On 24 minutes Jamal Tavares got himself in on goal but Town goalkeeper Gary Doherty was quick off his line to save at the feet on the striker. Simon Warrington found some joy on the flanks but the Mallards couldn't quite make it count in the final third and it remained goalless at the break.
There was controversy at the start of the second half with the Mallards denied what seemed to be a certain corner after a shot on goal was saved by the foot of Doherty and from the resulting goal kick, Town scored on 48. With the ball kicked forward, they won a corner which was duly headed in by Quinn at the front post.
That wasn't to deter the Reserves however, and with some last ditch defending Warrington was denied again. Then on 68 minutes they scored a deserved equaliser; Lorcan McGrady crossed from the left and goalkeeper Doherty spilled the ball, which was inched over the line in the ensuing goal line scramble.
The Mallards had the ball in the net again on 76 minutes but it was ruled out for a foul on Doherty who was challenged in the air, during what became a proper old fashioned cup tie with end to end action.
Shortly after Town were incensed that they weren't awarded a penalty when goalkeeper Brownlee clashed with the incoming Town striker, and it certainly seemed like a strong case, but referee Chris Morrow was unmoved.
Both teams went in search of a winner with McGrady denied by Doherty but ultimately the game went to extra time.
Within seconds of the restart McGrady ripped through the Town defence on the dribble but again Doherty was his equal to keep things level.
It was Town's turn to attack now and they forced Ballinamallard into two great blocks which eventually resulted in a corner, which in similarity to their first goal, was headed in by Adam Breen to take the lead again on 96.
With only seconds left in the second period of extra time there was yet more drama. A terrible challenge wide on the right seen Town reduced to 10 men and in the following free kick, Jake Browne managed to get a touch on the cross to equalise in the 112 minute!
In the penalties, Town scored all 4 and goalkeeper Doherty saved two to send the Fermanagh and Western side into Round 4.
An entertaining and competitive game throughout, played infront of a decent crowd at Ferney Park. Our youngsters can be incredibly proud of their efforts and they stuck to their footballing instincts throughout, even in the dying seconds of the game.
Congratulations to Enniskillen Town, and best wishes for the remainder of the competition.