ON Saturday Rathfriland played a very strong Windmill team in the IFA Games Development Centre in Newry.
Rathfriland were missing a number of their regular players so they had to make a couple of changes with Adam Trimble deputising in goals and Frank Finlay making his debut in midfield.
Windmill started the stronger and scored a couple of early goals, but Rathfriland kept their cool and fought hard to get back into the game.
Shane Haughey and Alex McKee started to dominate the midfield and create a number of chances which put Rathfriland on the front foot. Reuben Toal then made a great run down the right wing and Frank Finlay got into the Windmill box to convert the cross to score his first goal for the Club.
Rathfriland gained a lot of confidence from this goal and started to play some great passing football.
In the second period Adam Trimble pulled of a couple of great saves to keep Rathfriland in the game. Christopher McConville and Steven McElroy were put under a lot of pressure in this period and had their work cut out to keep the Windmill forward line quiet.
This Windmill team, who have been unbeaten all year played some great passing football of their own and scored a couple of goals late on in the second period.
In the third period Rathfriland started the better and had a couple of long range efforts from Shane Haughey and Christopher McConville hitting the crossbar and going narrowly wide. Eoghan Travers started to work his magic up front and headed a great cross from Shane Haughey into the Windmill net to score Rathfriland’s second of the game.
This was a very close and hard fought game with both teams playing some great football. The Rathfriland players can take a lot from this game as Windmill have not been beaten all year and the Windmill manager said this was the toughest game they have had all season.
Team: Adam Trimble, Steven McElroy, Christopher McConville, Alex McKee, Shane Haughey (Captain), Reuben Toal, Eoghan Travers and Frank Finlay.
Man of the Match: Shane Haughey.