Senior Reserve League Division 1
Fr. Manning Gaels v St. Mary’s, Granard
Referee: Aidan Dowler
The Gaels got their first win in the Division 1 Reserve League in a highly entertaining encounter in a blustery Monaduff Park on Good Friday evening. Only a goal separated the sides at the final whistle but the home side were full value for the win. Granard started the brightest with an early goal, which came just after Eoin Keane’s penalty was well saved in the 5th minute. Keane followed this miss immediately with a terrific long range point against a strong wind, and his accurate passing throughout the game was instrumental in the Gaels’ victory. Gaels responded to this early set back with two goals in quick succession. First, James Breslin powered through and side-stepped the keeper brilliantly for a simple finish and then Petie Collum fired an unstoppable shot to the bottom corner after being put through by Danny McGee. McGee then got a deserved point for himself from an acute angle which was followed up with a long range strike from Petie Collum in front of the goals. Collum then swung over a tricky 35 yard free from out to the right. St. Mary’s got themselves right back into the game with 3 marvellous unanswered points including two from their impressive centre back. This left the score at half time, Fr. Manning Gaels 3-4, St. Mary’s Granard 1-6.
The visitors started the the second half the brightest, bringing the game level with 1-1 upon the resumption. Petie Collum steadied the ship with a well struck free before he pointed again from play after great work by influential substitute Mark Prunty, who himself landed a fine effort not long after. Collum then got his second goal of the night after a scrambled effort found its way over the line. The Gaels looked to be cruising to victory at this stage but a well worked Granard move up the field yielded in a palmed goal which left only 2 points between the teams with less than 10 minutes remaining. When David Cassidy was black carded, the Gaels looked like they might be in serious trouble. However, the experienced Martin Mulleady popped up with two vital points, the latter an excellent strike from 40 yards, to extend the Gaels’ lead to 4. St. Mary’s responded with two pointed frees, the former resulting in a black card for the hard working Ciarán Cooney. With conceding 3-11 the management team won’t be too pleased but it must be said Derek McCormack was most commanding at full back. It was a nervous finish but when Petie Collum curled over his 6th point from a tight angle with a minute of normal time remaining, there was only going to be one winner. Full time score: Fr. Manning Gaels 4-11, St. Mary’s, Granard 3-11.
Team: Scott Howe, Stephen Cosgrave, Derek McCormack, Leon McKeon, Dean Cosgrave, David Cassidy, Nigel Kiernan, Seán Whelan, James Breslin (1-0), Ciarán Cooney, Martin Mulleady (0-2), Anthony Keane, Petie Collum (2-6, 3f), Eoin Keane (0-1), Danny McGee (1-1)
Subs used: Mark Prunty (0-1), Darren Reilly, Ruairí Carthy, Eoin O’Hara