This was Queen’s first of two encounters against Lisburn Distillery in the space of a fortnight. Each team had just one point from the first two league games, so even this early in the season the result was important. Conor Lally continued in goal for the suspended Declan Brown. In the other goal was former Queen’s keeper Jack McCrea playing against his former club for the first time.
The visitors were in the ascendancy from the first whistle and soon brought a good save from Lally who tipped over the bar a good shot from Darren Docherty. Queen’s luck was in when Jodie Lynch played in Paul Young on the left and his shot came back off the crossbar. The opening goal came after 31 minutes when referee Woodside awarded a free kick against Chris McIlwaine, a harsh looking decision. There were no question marks against Johnathan McCaw’s strike which dipped over the wall giving Lally no chance. Queen’s had chances too especially when Matt Hughes did well on the left and his low cross found Cameron McCauley who shot straight at McCrea. Queen’s had their best spell just before the break and drew level when Hughes passed to Jones who set Connor Mulholland in and he rounded McCrea and found the empty net.
The second half was barely started when Queen’s Robbie Budden conceded a free on the edge of the box, not a good idea when McCaw is around. His second strike was even better than his first, Lally having no chance when McCaw blasted the ball into the top corner. Five minutes later it was all over. Distillery cleared a long ball up the pitch in the direction of Beta who took advantage of serious hesitancy in the Queen’s defence to lob the ball over Lally and into the empty net. McIlwaine headed against the visitors crossbar and late in the game as Queen’s pushed forward, Johnny Gibson’s pass was intercepted giving Distillery a three against one breakaway. Young found Beta who drew Lally and passed to McMurtry for a tap in.
Distillery were well worth their win, their first for some time. Hopefully Queen’s will give a much better performance when these two teams meet again in the Irish Cup in two weeks’ time.
Next game is home to NAFL Division 1A side, Newcastle, in the Steel Cup on Sat 24th Sept ko 2:30pm.