Delargy tuned in for Portglenone’s next test

By Michael McMullan

LEAGUE champions Portglenone are chasing a first county senior final spot since 2009 when they lock horns with Dunloy on Friday night (Dunsilly, 7.30pm).

The Casements took out Creggan in the quarter-finals thanks to Aidan McAleese’s goal, but Niall Delargy is fully aware of what they are meeting this weekend.

Delargy, who kicked a point against Creggan, was a welcome starter for John McKeever’s side after having his preparations curtailed by injury.

Speaking after their quarter-final win, he was happy to see his side continuing to learn tight games and was already looking at the next step.

“We have great respect for Dunloy as a club and we certainly won’t underestimate them,” Delargy said, stressing that he wasn’t in attendance at Dunsilly to run his eye over Dunloy’s dramatic extra-time win over Lámh Dhearg. The focus was fully on Creggan.

“A lot of those boys went to St Louis (Grammar School Ballymena) and we grew up together,” he said of Dunloy.

“We know how good a football team they are. Around the county, they have got the name of being a surprise packet but, in reality, when put their focus on football they have great footballers. They can take scalps as Lámh Dhearg found out.”

Portglenone have been on the wrong end of semi-final roller-coasters against Aghagallon in recent seasons and after securing the league title a tilt at an elusive first senior championship has returned to view.

The second semi-final this weekend will take place on Sunday (Dunsilly, 2pm) with reigning champions Cargin putting their title on the line against St Brigid’s.

Cargin’s wastefulness in front of goal nearly cost them against Aghagallon before coming through by a single point.

St Brigid’s were winners over Rossa in the last night with Enda Downey kicking five points in a 0-13 to 0-10 victory.

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