SUPERCUPNI: County Antrim make history with win over Bayern

County Antrim's Junior players hold aloft the SuperCupNI trophy after victory over GPS Bayern. Pic by Pacemaker.
County Antrim's Junior players hold aloft the SuperCupNI trophy after victory over GPS Bayern. Pic by Pacemaker.

County Antrim created their own little piece of history with their 2-0 win over GPS Bayern as they became the first County side to win the Junior Section of the SuperCupNI.

A wonder strike from Darren Hyland in the first half and a second-half header from Geard Storey sealed the win for the local side, who emulate the Premier team of 2015, who are the only local side to win the senior section.

County Antrim made the early running with Barry Crowe picking out David Faulkner with a great cross from the right-hand side, but the front man could not direct his header goalwards.

Ruadhan McKenna had to be alert to get to the ball before the onrushing Giacomo Sinopoli, who almost got on the end of Dawson Malcolm’s long free kick, which evaded the Antrim defence on six minutes.

Christopher McKee and Lee Rea combined well on eight minutes with the latter finding himself with a sight of goal, but Alfonso De Vito pushed his shot away for a corner.

GPS Bayern hit back three minutes later as Maxwell Murray stung the palms of McKenna with another set piece from distance, the keeper reacted well to gather the ball at the second attempt.

County Antrim went close to breaking the deadlock on 21 minutes as GPS failed to clear their lines from a corner.

Lee Rea latched on to the loose ball on the edge of the box before crashing a shot off the cross bar.

The ball came out to McKee who forced De Vito into a smart stop.

They didn’t have long to wait for the opener though and what a goal it was.

Left back Darren Hyland strode forward with the ball before smashing a shot into the top corner.

They went close again in first half stoppage time as Rea teed up Faulkner, but again De Vito denied the local lads.

County Antrim picked up in the second half where they left off in the first with McKee lashing a shot just off target from the edge of the box two minutes after the restart.

A neat piece of skill by Barry Crowe on the halfway line saw him lose his marker on 34 minutes and he threaded a great through ball for Rea to chase, unfortunately it was just out of reach for the striker.

County Antrim grabbed the all important second goal midway through the half as substitute Storey, who had only been on the pitch for a matter of minutes, got on the end of Craig Simpson’s free kick to beat De Vito.

The local team were dominant now and another free-kick from Crowe created havoc in the GPS defence, the only thing missing was a goal bound touch from his team-mates.

The goal had clearly boosted Storey and he twice went close to grabbing another in the closing stages, but De Vito denied him on both occasions.

County Antrim: McKenna, Simpson, Hyland, Crowe, Hume, Johnston, Wylie, Rea, McKee, Faulkner, Snodden, McKenna.

Subs: Lennon, Jameson, McKiernan, Donnelly, Mitchell, Storey, Elliott.

GPS Bayern: De Vito, Maina, Meredith, Cubillos, Murray, Rent, Rice, Donovan, Farwell, Malcolm, Sinopoli.

Subs: Hernandez, Wilkes, Lynch, Torres, Gardner, Neptune, Hazim.