A stretched Culmore U13s side slip to a 5-0 defeat at the hands of Top of The Hill Celtic at St Brecans.
On a day where the adverse weather conditions meant that playing a football match would be extremely difficult, Culmore's woes were added to by only having 11 players available for the match.
With no goalkeeper available, Jack Cassidy stepped up to plate to stand in and more than hold his own in goal. As did other players such as, Matthew Mclaughlin, who put in a great shift upfront, giving the opposition defenders no respite throughout the whole game.
The game started well for Culmore, pinning Top of The Hill into their own half for the opening 15 minutes. Playing against a strong, howling wind, the Culmore boys got the ball down and worked it neatly between each other with some nice one and two touch football, Braonan Walker and John O'Hagan seemed to be in control of the game. During this phase Culmore did threaten the goal and went close a few times through Aodhan McGuigan and Conor Kearney.
However, as the match went on the Top of The Hill team grew into it and before long began to dominate possession and play with the wind behind them. A sterling effort from the back 4 of Declan Maher, Callum Feeney, Noel Murphy and Eoin Irwin throughout the whole match was first breached mid-way through the first half. Some neat play from Top of The Hills right winger, who was excellent throughout the whole game created space and the striker finished well. And shortly before the break, the lead was double through a very similar attack.
Up-beat at half time that a comeback was most definitely on the cards, the Culmore boys started the second half much like the first and straight from the kick off after some clever one-twos, space opened up for Tom Mooney to let fly from all over 30 yards only for the Top of The Hill goal keeper to save well.
Shortly after, Culmore with no subs were forced to 10 men and Eoin Irwin was forced off with injury after a great battling performance. Now, stripped to the bare bones, Culmore were pegged in for the rest of the game and their resilience was broken and Top of The Hill scored 3 more times to round of a great performance for them.
The Culmore boys were understandably down after the game but once again, the signs are there to show that massive improvements and forward strives are being made. And with a bit more match experience and know how, results will surely follow.