Senior Club Championship Rd 2: Austin Stacks 1-14 Kilcummin 1-2.
When these two sides met in Connolly Park five weeks ago in the first round of the Co. League it was the visitors who came out on top (1-11 to 0-9). On this occasion, in the second round of the Club Championship, the home side reversed that result and with some style. Deep in added time we were 15 points ahead (1-14 to 0-2) having kept the opposition scoreless from play. But with almost the last kick of the game Kilcummin got through for a goal before referee Billy O’Shea (Keel) blew the final whistle from our kick-out.
In the very first attack of the game Dylan Casey picked up a nasty leg injury and, unlike last week when a similar incident occurred out in Annascaul Dylan didn’t recover on this occasion and had to be substituted after our physio Fionán Hallinan did his utmost to rectify it. All wish Dylan a full and speedy recovery. Settling after that incident we opened the scoring in the 7th minute. A perfect high cross-field ball from Barry Shanahan was fielded beautifully by Kieran Donaghy who found Shane O’Callaghan who put over. Two quick points followed from Greg Horan and Seán Quilter before our only goal of the game came mid-way through the first half. And if we will see a better goal all season then it will have to be something special. A Kilcummin attack was turned over in our half back line and Greg Horan made his way upfield, dodging tackle after tackle, before burying the ball in the back of the Kilcummin net for the best goal seen in Connolly Park, or anywhere for that matter, for quite some time (Even some biased Liverpool supporters claim it was even better than the one Mo Salah scored over in Anfield later that evening).
Our next three scores then came from Seán Quilter – one from play – before Kilcummin got their only score of the half, a pointed forty five deep in added time. This left us with a commanding nine points lead at the break (1-7 to 0-1).
Now facing into a strong breeze in the second half we braced ourselves for a come-back from the visitors. They did open the second half scoring in the 38th minute with a pointed free. But it was our lads who took complete control thereafter scoring a further seven unanswered points. Shane O’Callaghan scored two of these from play but it was Seán Quilter again who stole the show with four more points (three from frees) to add to his four in the first half. His free-taking was absolutely superb, measuring the strength of breeze on each occasion to perfection. Our final score came in the 62nd minute when two of our subs combined – Ferdia O’Brien putting Michael O’Gara through for a punched score. Two minutes later came that Kilcummin goal. So another perfect performance by all our starting 15 together with the six subs used by Wayne and his colleagues.
Team: Robbie Murphy, Colin Griffin, Barry Shanahan, Dylan Casey, Jack O’Shea, Ronan Shanahan, Jack Morgan, Wayne Guthrie (Capt) (0-1 – forty five), Joseph O’Connor, Greg Horan (1-1), Darragh O’Brien, Ciarán O’Reilly, Seán Quilter (0-8 – four frees), Kieran Donaghy, Shane O’Callaghan (0-3).
Subs used: John Dennis (4m), Shane Carroll (48m), Fiachna Mangan (53m), Michael O’Gara (55m) (0-1), Ciarán O’Connell (58m), Ferdia O’Brien (58m).
Before the game a minutes silence was observed for the late Gene Moriarty Kilcummin (former Kilcummin Vice Chairman and Uncle of Kieran Donaghy) and Martin Dowling, Hill View Drive, Caherslee, Tralee (Grandfather of Stacks Senior players Darragh & Ferdia O’Brien).
So a win in our third and final game in Kenmare next week-end will qualify us for a place in this season’s Club Championship Final. Game takes place at 2.30pm this Sunday April 21st in Kenmare.
photographs by Adrienne Mc Loughlin: