NFC Kesh 2 Killen Rangers 1

NFC Kesh progressed to the next round of the Mulhern Cup, but they had to come from behind to defeat Killen Rangers at Michael Connolly Park on Saturday. 
There was no repeat of the nine goal hammering Kesh had dished out to the same opponents just a week previously, with the home team relying on second half goals from Lee Walker and Jake Irvine to overcome a half time deficit.
“I knew it wasn’t going to be as straightforward as last week,” said manager Nicky Noble. 
“They upped their game and we maybe went in with the wrong frame of mind, but the boys played well and dominated most of the play. 
“I always felt our goal was coming, and once we got it I knew we were going to go on and take it. 
“I had confidence in them going on and winning it. 
“It’s good to get into the next round. We have Strule next and that will be another good test for us.”
From the kick off Kesh looked the more dangerous of the two sides, with Mark McCauley and Mark Jones both firing wide of the target when well placed within the opening 15 minutes of the contest.
On 20 minutes Killen had a sight of goal but Jamie Sproule fired over the crossbar from eight yards out, while at the other end McCauley fired straight at keeper Ward. 
However, after 25 minutes the away side took an unexpected lead when Grant Ellis’ misjudgement allowed Scott Sproule to fire a shot into the corner of the net.
In the second half, Kesh pushed forward in search of the equaliser and Walker had a shot well saved, but Jamie Sproule had a chance to double his team’s lead only for Kesh keeper McClelland to make a crucial save.
Just after the hour mark Kesh got back on level terms in the match when Mark Jones miskicked a Nigel Beacom cross, but Lee Walker pounced on the loose ball to curl a shot past the keeper. 
And with 15 minutes left to play the home outfit grabbed the winner when Jake Irvine fired in his first goal for the club from ten yards out following a cross from Jones. 
McCauley and Jones both had late chances to ease any last minute nerves, but despite failing to find the net Kesh held on to secure their place in the next round and a meeting with Division Two side Strule United.