U14s Victorious10 Jul 2009 by Gilbert Williams
Kilruane MacDonaghs 3-14 Kildangan 2-5
In MacDonagh Park Thursday July 9th
MacDonaghs needed to win this game to stay in the hunt for a semi-final spot. Manager Pat Shanahan welcomed back Stephen and James Cleary but was still without the services of injured duo Conor Austin and Darragh Peters while Conor Cleary was on holidays. They got the perfect start when centre forward Stephen Cleary raced through the Kildangan defence inside the first fifteen seconds and struck a delightful point. Kildangan replied with a point before Aidan Boyle slotted over a free after a foul on Stephen Cleary. Aidan Boyle added another point from play but Kildangan kept in touch with a point from a placed ball. Aidan raised his third white flag and then in the thirteenth minute Stephen Cleary galloped through the Kildangan rearguard and fired the ball to the net. Aidan Boyle struck a purple patch and hit three successive points. Stephen Cleary chipped in with a point too leave nine points between the sides. Approaching half time Kildangan were thrown a lifeline when they found the net to reduce the deficit. Aidan Boyle had the last say when he was on target from a free to leave the scoreboard 1-9 to 1-2 in favour of the home side.
On the resumption, MacDonaghs hit the ground running with Cian Darcy slotting over a point from the corner. Kildangan hit back with the opening point of the half and got a great boost in the eighth minute when a sixty five deceived the Kilruane defence and ended up in the net. This left just four points between the sides and it was game on. However, MacDonaghs responded magnificently to the challenge. Directly from the puckout Cian Darcy ghosted inside the Kildangan defence, soloed through and finished to the net with aplomb to restore the seven point advantage. At this stage the selectors pulled back Stephen Cleary to wing back to stiffen the defence and Aidan Boyle moved to centre forward. Aidan continued to prosper and swung over three successive points. Cian Darcy had the last score of the game when he caught a high delivery from Aidan Boyle and finished to the net from a tight angle. The sides must meet again in a playoff for the last semi-final spot.
This was a crucial victory victory for the home side, as defeat would have meant exit from the competition. Aidan Boyle was outstanding in the attack with Stephen Cleary’s return adding further firepower. Bob Dooley is having a great season and he gave another great display at midfield. Under twelve players James Cleary, Cian Darcy, Kieran Brereton and Willie Ryan were very impressive with Cian helping himself to 2-2. Goalkeeper Anthony Spillane handled the ball with great confidence and got great length in his puck outs. There is still plenty of room for improvement, however, and Kildangan will present a formidable challenge in the play off.
Scorers: Aidan Boyle 0-10, Cian Darcy 2-2, Stephen Cleary 1-2
Team: Anthony Spillane, Willie Ryan, Abhain Coleman, Jack Farrell, Kieran Brereton, Tomás Hogan, Caoilainn Conroy, Bob Dooley, Sean Cleary, Finnian Mannion, Stephen Cleary, Cian Darcy, James Cleary, Peter Blessing and Aidan Boyle.
Subs: Conor Nevin, Conor Doheny, Mark Tierney and Niall Shinners.
Man of the Match: Aidan Boyle
Selectors: Pat Shanahan (Manager), D.J. Hayes, Ger O Meara and Liam Grace.
Referee: Kieran Delaney Toomevara
Postscript: Cian Darcy travelled back from Dublin from the match. D.J. Hayes drove him back to Dublin safter the match, evidence of the commitment of both players and selectors.