Kerins O’Rahillys 1-10; Austin Stacks 1-8.
Kerins O’Rahillys advanced to the semi final of the Co. Club Championship with a two points win at an overcast and damp Strand Rd on this Tuesday evening (27th Aug). Ciarán Flanagan opened the scoring in the 5th minute when put in possession by Shane O’Callaghan. With both defences very tight, scores were at a premium for the rest of the half, and as half time approached both sides had only managed two more points each, both of ours coming from Kyle Fitzgibbon.
Then just before the break a high ball in by Alan Duggan was beautifully batted down by Flan into the path of Shane O’Callaghan and Shane planted the ball in the net for a great goal which left us four ahead at the interval (1-3 to 0-2).
Having lost Joseph O’Kelly before the start of the game, we now suffered a double whammy during half time when both Darragh O’Brien (severe concussion) and Conor Jordan (hip injury) couldn’t resume for the second half. Darragh had to be hospitalized and we all wish him a full and speedy recovery.
Despite these mishaps we still continued to play well and by the end of the third quarter had opened a gap of five points (1-7 to 0-5) – our four scores coming from Kyle (3) and Ciarán Flanagan again.
Rahillys got a point back in the 46th minute and then a minute later came, what turned out to be, a game-changer, when we were harshly reduced to 14 men.
With the home side putting on the pressure, a cross-field clearance by our lads was intercepted by the opposition who raced through for a goal. The equalizer came in the 54th minute and they then went on to put over three more as the time ran down.
Then, in injury time Greg Horan, in one last attack, ran the length of the pitch, and his firmly struck shot for the equalizer was goal-bound but the keeper tipped it over the bar, and the final whistle came from the kick-out.
We had some brilliant individual performances, none more so than from corner back Paul Galvin who had another stormer. However none of the 18 who played could be faulted for lack of effort and it was just a series of unfortunate mishaps that contributed to our defeat.
Having said that, full marks to O’Rahillys for a great contest, and we wish them well as they progress from here on.
Well done also to our team mentors, Tim McMahon, Colm Mangan and Denny Long and to the whole squad who lined out with the U21s during the season.
Team: Barry Galvin, Paul Galvin, Ciarán O’Connell, Barry Walsh, David O’Sullivan, Greg Horan (0-1), Tom McLoughlin, Conor Jordan, Brendan O’Neill (Capt), Alan Duggan, Shane O’Callaghan (1-0), Kyle Fitzgibbon (0-5 – 3 frees), Eamon McAllen, Darragh O’Brien, Kieran Flanagan (0-2).
Subs: Danny Carroll (ht), Seán Ryan (ht), Shane Crowley (31m).