By Michael McMullan
BELLAGHY were crowned league champions in Derry by virtue of 2022 winners Glen’s win over Tones’ nearest challengers Coleraine in their final game of the season.
Damian Cassidy’s side – still with a game to spare – were on the cusp of the title after last Tuesday’s win at home to Dungiven thanks to a Ciaran Chambers goal and a stellar second half showing.
The Tones started brightly but a Dungiven goal had the visitors in the driving seat and they led 1-5 to 0-5 with half time approaching with the accurate Charlie Diamond keeping them in touch.
Bellaghy hit back before the break, a Chambers goal after build-up play from Conleth McShane.
Diamond, Chrissy Downey and Damon Gallagher added scores in a 1-11 to 1-6 win for Bellaghy.
At the bottom, it’s all to play for with the bottom two set to play-off with the loser dropping to Division Two for next season.
Ballinascreen are already in the play-off where they could be joined by Dungiven, Lavey, Ballinderry or Swatragh.
With ‘Screen unable to finish above 13th, they’ve nothing to gain from a win over Lavey with Magherafelt, Kilrea and Bellaghy also safe.
If two teams are level on points, placings (as per 3.6 of the Derry Competitions Regulations) will be decided by head to head.
If the teams drew their game and if more than two teams are level on points, then score difference, highest score for and highest goals for – in that order – will decide placings.
Thursday, July 13 (8pm)
Ballinascreen v Lavey
Swatragh v Bellaghy
Ballinderry v Magherafelt
Friday, July 14 (8.15pm)
Sleacht Néill v Steelstown
Saturday, July 15 (1.30pm)
Dungiven v Kilrea
Previous games: Swatragh beat Lavey, Lavey beat Dungiven, Dungiven beat Ballinascreen, Ballinderry beat Ballinascreen, Lavey beat Ballinderry, Swatragh beat Dungiven, Swatragh drew with Ballinderry, Dungiven beat Ballinderry, Swatragh beat Ballinascreen
The drop zone: