OWEN Roes manager Barry Tracey maintains that the buoyant Glenmornan club will now set new targets for themselves even though they have already achieved their twin objectives for the season.
Consolidating their Division Two status and registering a first round victory in the Intermediate Championship were the realistic aims laid down for the Roes at the outset of the year.
After thirteen seasons battling to get out of the bottom tier, the club rightly didn’t want to be seen singing from the rooftops about their prospects heading into a higher level of football.
Yet, even with their talisman Cathal McShane missing for the bulk of the campaign, the side sit comfortably in the top half of the league table, with relegation easily staved off, and last Friday night at Healy Park they got the better of a battling Aghaloo side 1-8 to 1-7 to advance into the last eight in the Paddy Cullen Cup.
Yet as they prepare to face on-song Augher this Saturday afternoon in Pomeroy, Barry Tracey insists that his squad won’t down tools now that they have fulfilled their own expectations for the year.
“It’s great for Owen Roes to be looking forward to an Intermediate Championship quarter-final. Our theme this year was to survive in the Division. We have already done that which is a great achievement. We have fifteen points with two games left and we won our first Championship match.
“That was our other target this year but we’ll go out the next day and set new targets for ourselves and we’ll go again.”
The O’Neills had to grind their way to victory last Friday, missing a hatful of chances form open play and the placed ball, before sub Ryan McShane stepped up to the mark to land the winning free in injury time. Tracey felt that the flawed nature of their performance owed much to the protracted break which the side had to endure over the summer.
“It wasn’t the prettiest of second halves after we got off to a flying start. Again I put that down to maybe rustiness. We all love to see Tyrone doing well but the nine week break wasn’t ideal for us as we were on a roll before it.
“Since we’re back we have had the one league game without Cathal (McShane) who was away on holidays. Again we came out on the wrong side of that against Stewartstown but certainly there is lots to be working on.
FULL STORY IN THURSDAY’S STRABANE CHRONICLE…