Rangers pip Harps to league title.

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Rangers pip Harps to league title. thumbnailSimon O'Neill on the ball for Strathroy Harps.

IT came down to the final day of the season, one of the closest and most thrilling title races in Mercer League history.


Ultimately it was Enniskillen Rangers who prevailed 3-0 in the winner-takes-all clash with Strathroy Harps at the Ball Range last Thursday, thus finishing a point ahead and ending a 19 year wait for the Fermanagh and Western Division One crown.

Harps were going for their fourth consecutive title, and after a terrific run-in over the past few weeks that saw them overtake long time leaders NFC Kesh and go into pole position, they only needed a point to get their hands on the silverware yet again.

Rangers though, having defended their Irish Junior Cup crown in May, had a host of excess league games to be fulfilled, including five games in nine days to set up the final day decider.

They were resolute in their focus towards achieving their double dream, and produced the goods yet again to get over the line against a Harps side who simply couldn't match their Fermanagh rivals on the night.

Leading scorer Mark Cutler opened the scoring in the 17th minute after Stephen Chambers linked up with Christopher Currie on the left who skipped past a defender before cutting the ball across goal for Cutler to slot home.

After the break, the visitors started to put on the pressure in search of an equaliser, but it was Rangers who grabbed the game's next goal when influential player-manager Micky Kerr found Jason Keenan who held off the challenge of Michael Logue before rounding Harps goalkeeper Niall McCrory and producing a composed finish.

The icing on the cake came six minutes from time when William Burleigh collected a Darren Simpson throw-in to lay on a cross for Cutler to apply the finish for 3-0.

For Harps, it resulted in the end of a trophy-less season for the first time since 2010.

The dominant force in local junior football for the past decade, they will no doubt regroup and challenge again for every honour next season However they will be without the services of manager Shane Horisk, who after the game announced his decision to step down after the runners-up play-off tie with NFC Kesh at Crawford's Lane, Dromore on Thursday night


Subscribe to read full newspaper »

Send to a friend

Please complete the following form to inform a friend about this page.

In order to process your information we must ask you to enter the letters in the image into the box:

CAPTCHA Image play audio version Reload Image

* Mandatory field - please complete