Junior Town League Final: Austin Stacks 1-18; Ardfert 1-6.
In their last game of the season our B team won their second silver-ware of the season when they captured the Tralee Town Board JF League after a very solid performance played in dreadful weather conditions in Strand Road on this Saturday afternoon (13th Oct).
Playing with the aid of the elements in the first half we got off to a perfect start when Gearóid McCann won the throw-in, found Mikey Collins, who passed to Donagh McKivergan and Donagh, from distance, pointed beautifully after just 22 seconds. Ardfert however responded well and mounted attack after attack for the next ten minutes but some brilliant defensive work by our six backs, ably assisted by our two midfielders, kept them scoreless until the 23rd minute. In the meantime we had added a further goal and two points – our points coming in quick succession in the 13th and 14th minutes from Donnagh Mac (his second) and Fergal Ryan after a neat pass from Dale Counihan. Our goal then came in the 18th minute when Mikey Collins, who was through on goal, was fouled in the square and Fergal Ryan tucked away the resultant penalty as good as Lionel Messi ever did.
Five minutes later Ardfert got their first score – a pointed free – but we followed this with three unanswered points – a pointed free by Donagh Mac and two from play by Fergal Ryan and Dale Counihan. Both sides then had a point each just coming up to half time – ours from Mikey Collins – to leave us ahead by 1-7 to 0-2 at the interval.
With the elements now favouring the Ardfert boys we were bracing ourselves for an onslaught but it was our lads who were quickest off the mark – scoring the first three points of the half – Michael Linnane, Mikey Collins and Shane Kelliher (coming up from his corner back position) on target. Then in the 40th minute Ardfert pounced on a breaking ball in the square for their goal. But we responded well, scoring the next four points – two by Mikey Collins and one each by Gearóid Fitzgerald and Donagh McKivergan (free).
The 4th quarter was evenly contested with both sides scoring four points each – our four coming from Mikey Collins (with two more again), Donagh McKivergan (free) and Dale Counihan from play. So a well-deserved twelve points victory to conclude a very interesting season with all our eighteen players performing exceptionally well on the day – on a dreadful day – weather-wise. That said, let us thank the O’Rahillys Club for the use of their pitch which was in excellent condition – despite the weather.
Well done also for a great season by our superb mentors – Paddy Barry, Eamonn O’Reilly, Kieran Kelliher and Brian Morgan. Jimmy Browne, on behalf of the Tralee Town Board, presented team captain, Andrew Morrissey, with the winning Cup. Andrew thanked everybody for their commitment on day, including our own players, the Ardfert team and referee, Eddie Barrett (Knocknagoshel).
Team: Pa Fitzgibbon, Shane Kelliher (0-1), John Dennis, Paul Galvin, Eoghan Galvin, Barry Shanahan, Andrew Morrissey (Capt), Gearóid McCann, Gearóid Fitzgerald (0-1), Michael Collins (0-6), Dale Counihan (0-2), Fergal Ryan (1-2 – penalty goal), Donagh McKivergan (0-5 – three frees), William Kirby, Michael Linnane (0-1).
Subs used: Barry Galvin (45m), John Murphy (46m), Jonathan Boulding (50m).