ADRIAN MCGUCKIN has been around football long enough to know that nothing can be taken for granted. His experience has proven that.
Jordanstown may have been hot favourites to record an easy win in Tuesday’s Sigerson Cup opener against University of Limerick, but games like these seldom go to form. For starters, there was a UUJ injury list which included defenders Carlus McWilliams, Ronan McNamee, and Eoin Wade who broke a thumb on county duty with Donegal last Thursday night.
Midfielder Niall Donnelly is out for the season with knee ligament damage. Up front CJ McGourty’s leg break has ruled him out of contention, while captain Ciaran Donnelly and Lee Moore are both sidelined with hamstring trouble.
Pair that with the fact that UL were sporting eight of the current Kerry senior training squad, as well as a host of seasoned senior Kerry club players, and it was always going to be an uphill struggle.
Jordanstown raced into an early lead, 0-3 to 0-0, but when complacency set in, UUJ thinking they were in a comfort zone and taking too much out of the ball, it came back to bite them and they quickly found themselves trailing 1-5 to 0-3. They pulled the deficit back to three points at the break, where the players found themselves on the receiving end from the UUJ management team of McGuckin and Barney McAleenan.
Jordanstown got their act together in the second half and went ahead, and in the end showed great spirit to hang on for a one-point win, 1-10 to 1-9, with UL throwing everything but the kitchen sink at them in search of the leveller.
“Tuesday’s game turned out basically exactly how I expected it to. We started well, then became a complete shambles. UL packed their defence and were breaking very well, our defence was all over the place, and we were glad to get them in at the break. We knew that three points wasn’t an insurmountable lead,” said McGuckin.
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