Santos FC (H)

Co. Antrim Junior Shield
Sat 1st Oct - 2:15pm
A disappointing performance saw the Strollers fall at the first hurdle of this season's edition of Junior Shield, crashing out 5-1 to Mid Ulster League side Santos.
Despite an open first 15 minutes, it was the visitors who opened the scoring with their first chance of the match as their front man tapped home at the back from a ball played across the penalty area before they made it 2-0 eight minutes later, as an unmarked man volleyed home from a corner.
Between times, Paul Gilchrist was inches from heading a chance goalwards from a good delivery from John Alexander before a 20 yard strike from Jason Connolly whistled narrowly wide of the top corner.
Strollers pulled one back through a terrific Gilchrist free kick which was curled in to the top corner over the wall and the home side piled on the pressure but the score remained 2-1 at the interval.
Strollers went searching for their equaliser from the start of the second period and this proved to be their downfall as Santos hit them on the counter when a misplaced pass allowed the visitors to storm upfield and grab a third.
Frustrations were starting to creep in as Matthew Logan, Owen Gregg and Jason Connolly all saw yellow cards before the ref inexplicably allowed play to continue following a Santos player throwing a punch off the ball and as the home side protested, the visitors scored their fourth.
Logan then saw a second yellow before debutant Jolon Cupple's header hit the post before Santos hit a fifth against the ten men.
If truth be told, Santos deserved to win the game based on performance but the 5-1 scoreline was harsh on the Wakehurst side.
Starting Team: D. Adams, M. Logan, S. Burns, R. Colville, M. Strange, C. Allen (C), J. Connolly, T. Campbell, D. Johnston, P. Gilchrist, J. Alexander.
Subs: O. Gregg (on for Connolly 63), P. Nowak (on for Strange, 67), J. Cupples (on for Campbell, 78)