CUP football played at it’s best saw UUJ score the winning goal in the 89th minute to take the students through to the second round of the Intermediate Cup.
In the opening 30 minutes Rathfriland dominated, playing some very good football with numerous corners and free kicks awarded but to no avail.
The opposition eventually got to grips with play and put Rangers under pressure with Larkin, McAlister and goalkeeper Harrison having to raise their game.
On the stroke of half time, Ryan Evans weaved his way in from the right wing and unleashed a cracking shot only to see the home keeper making a brilliant save at the base of the post.
Rathfriland started the second half on the front foot pinning UUJ back into their own half but the UUJ central defenders marshalled the attacks superbly well. Johnny Jess for the Rangers had a great opportunity to score to take the lead only to see the keeper again make a great save.
Next to test the UUJ keeper was Ally Wilson with a thunderous shot on target but again the keeper managed to turn it over the bar.
At the 60th minute a corner kick was awarded to Rangers with Ally Beck taking it quickly to catch the home keeper off his line and the ball ending up in the back of the net to leave Rangers in front at last.
UUJ introduced a Sub and within three minutes of him taking the field and with his first kick of the ball he scored to bring the score level.
At the restart Rangers made a great move down the right wing and from the resulting cross had a sustained attack on the home goal but were denied with strong defending by the UUJ side which led to a hand ball in the scramble.
Stevie Coulter stepped up to the penalty spot to secure goal number two for Rangers. UUJ went up a gear from the kick off and forced Shane Harrison to make numerous saves from point blank range and with a good move down the right wing they scored their second goal.
Unfortunately, for Rathfriland Rangers, UUJ succeeded in a third goal in the 89th minute from another move down the ring wing and a cross onto the head of the centre forward who did brilliantly to beat the keeper
Rathfriland fought hard in the remaining minute to get the equalizer but on the day it was not to be.