Friday, December 20, 2002
GAA: U-21 “B” thriller goes to replay on Sunday
By: Phil Fanning
County U-21 “B” H Final
Gaeltacht 3-4, Erins Own/St. Saviour’s 3-4
DESPITE the low point ratio Gaeltacht and Erin’s Own/St. Saviour’s produced a most competitive and enjoyable hours hurling at Fraher field on Sunday last and at the final whistle it was only fitting that both sides should return to the same venue on Sunday next to decide the issue.
The opening minutes of the tie saw Gaeltacht looking the sharper side with their speedy forwards causing early problems for the Erin’s Own/St. Saviour’s defence.
Liam Ó Lionáin raced in for the opening point after just two minutes and Raymond Terry followed up with another good point from play in the 5th minute.
GOT TO GRIPS
Gradually the Erin’s Own/Saviour’s defence began to come to terms with their opponents and in the 9th minute, the citymen grabbed the lead when Brian Jacob shot to the net from close range.
Kevin Foley followed up with a point in the 17th minute John Paul Collingwood sent over a free to open up a three point lead.
It was short lived however, and in the 20th minute, Gaeltacht corner forward Cian Ó Concubhair made a great catch before smashing the ball to the Erin’s Own/Saviour’s net for the equaliser.
In the 22nd minute, John Paul Collingwood put Saviour’s back in front with a pointed free from a difficult angle but a minute later it was Ó Concubhair again who struck for his second goal to snatch back the lead.
Both sides had good chances for further scores before half time but failed to take them, leaving the score at the break Gaeltacht 2-2, Erin’s Own/St. Saviour’s 1-3.
The city side came out for the second half with John Paul Jacob, who did not start due to a hand injury, at full forward in place of Joey Phelan who moved back to the defence in place of Raymond Roberts.
With just 30 seconds played ” Concubhair had Gaeltacht three points clear but J. P. Collingwood hit back in kind two minutes later.
Both sets of defences were gaining the upper hand as scores were hard to come by but in the 40th minute, J. P. Jacob announced his arrival in no uncertain manner as he rounded his marker to shoot his side in to the lead with a great goal.
Now a point in front Erin’s Own/Saviour’s piled on the pressure but despite winning the bulk of possession, they failed to convert it into scores as Michael Furlong was wide from two 65’s and J. P. Jacob almost had a second goal.
Eventually the pressure told and in the 55th minute an excellent delivery from midfield, by Collingwood put J. P. Jacob through again and his perfect pass found the unmarked Jamie Finnerty in front of goal and he gave the keeper no chance from about six yards.
With four points now separating the teams, a lesser side might have capitulated but not this Gaeltach side. Within a minute Raymond Terry had the ball in the net at the other end and Erin’s Own/St. Saviour’s were not forced on to the defensive to protect their one point lead.
Gaeltacht piled on the pressure but the Erin’s Own/St. Saviour’s backs were hurling tenaciously. A shot from Sean Ó hAirtaigh was deflected out for a “65” with less than two minutes remaining.
The positioning of the ball for the “65” by centre back Padraig Ó hAirtaigh was hotly disputed by the opposition as the clock was running down but the Gaeltacht man made no mistake as he confidently slotted over the equaliser.
A further minute of play and referee Stan Flynn’s final whistle gave both sides the chance to win the game again on Sunday next and there could be no dissenting voices.
For Erin’s Own/Saviour’s the second half introduction of John Paul Jacob proved crucial and they also had excellent displays from Michael Doherty, Michael Furlong and Joey Phelan, in the second half, in defence. Kevin Foley worked hard in defence and attack while up front, apart from J. P. Jacob, John Paul Collingwood and Brian Jacob threatened most.
For Gaeltacht Noel Ó Murchadha at wing back was their outstanding player with good support in defence from Padraig Ó hAirtaigh and Gearoid Breathnack. Cillian Ó Murchadha was prominent in midfield and Liam Ó Lionain.
Scorers: Gaeltacht: C. ” Concubhair 2-1, R. Terry 1-1, L Ó Lionáin and P. Ó hAirtaigh 0-1 each. Erin’s Own/St. Saviour’s: B. Jacob, J. P. Jacob and J. Finnerty 1-0 each; J. P. Collingwood 0-3, K. Foley 0-1.
GAELTACHT: P. Ó Cathain, A. Ó Ceallaigh, G. Breathnach, S. Ó hAirtaigh, N. Ó Murchadhan, P. Ó hAirtaigh, L. De Gras, C. Ó Murchadha, D. Ó Meachair, S. Ó Cealliagh; R. Terry, L Ó Lionáin, C. Ó Concughair, K. Tobín, C. Ó hUallachain. Subs: M. Toibín, M. Ó Druacháin.
ERIN’S OWN/ST. SAVIOUR’S: J. Allen, G. Bolger, M. Doherty, A. Atkins, K. Furlong, M. Furlong, R. Roberts, K. Foley, J. Finnerty, J. P. Collingwood, S. O’Brien, S. Whelan, C. Power, B. Jacob, J. Phelan. Subs: J. P. Jacob, D. Atkins, G. McLaurence.
Referee: S. Flynn, Fenor.
An Ghaeltacht 2-8 Ferrybank 1-4