Gregory grabs the winner as Bellurgan advance

Bellurgan United U16s progressed to the 4th round of the SFAI National Cup on Sunday after this narrow 1-0 victory over Ashbourne United.

Bellurgan United U16s progressed to the 4th round of the SFAI National Cup on Sunday after this narrow 1-0 victory over Ashbourne United.

Bellurgan controlled the game from the off and once they broke the deadlock in the 33rd minute, they were always going to go on to win.

The visitors struggled to get out of their own half in the early stages as Bellurgan pressed for the opener.

Cian McDonald, Conor Kenny and Aaron Devlin all tested the Ashbourne ‘keeper in the opening 20 minutes and Kenny struck the Ashbourne post in the 29th minute but Shane Gregory grabbed the all important goal 33 minutes into the first half.

It was a goal worthy of being a winner; Aaron Devlin spotted the deep run from Shane Gregory who showed great composure to lob the ball over the advancing Eoin O’Connell.

The second-half was a fairly niggly and scrappy affair. Bellurgan had chances to increase their lead, a Gregory free-kick flashed wide of the post and Conor Kenny’s well struck shot produced a good save from O’Connell.

Ashbourne forced several corners in the closing ten minutes in their search for an equaliser.

Shane Ray brought out the best out of Rory Duffy when he drew a brilliant reflex save out of the Bellurgan ‘keeper but it was the local side who created the better chances and deservedly held on to win the game.

Bellurgan will play Kentstown Rovers in the 4th round on Sunday December 1 and are now just one game away from the draw for the last 32 teams in the competition.

Bellurgan UNITED: Rory Duffy, Aaron McParland, Killian Dempsey, Alex Woods, Cian Duffy, Christopher McGuinness, Matthew Lines, Shane Gregory, Aaron Devlin, Conor Kenny, Cian McDonald, Jason Woods, Adam Finnegan, Jamie McEvoy and Sean Hayes.