WITH 60 minutes on the clock Scoil Mhuire, Clane could have been forgiven for thinking that they were about to be crowned Leinster Post Primary Schools Juvenile A Football champions. The Kildare school were leading their Wexford opponents by three points in Dr Cullen Park in Carlow after they seemed to have withstood a second half onslaught from Good Counsel, writes Ruth Chambers.
Leinster Post Primary Schools Juvenile Football Final
Good Counsel: 4-5
Scoil Mhuire, Clane: 2-7
However, fast forward six minutes and Scoil Mhuire were left dejected. Their opponents, who twice hit the onion sack in stoppage time, had completely turned the game on it’s head and ensured that the provincial title travelled to the sunny south east.
The opened half firmly belonged to Scoil Mhuire and to lively corner forward Ciaran Kelly in particular. It took ten minutes for the Kildare school to opened their account and when they did it was Kelly who raised a white flag with his shot from the left of the posts. The same player converted a free off the ground a minute later before Scoil Mhuire grabbed their first of two goals.
A ball in from midfield man Brian McLoughlin was broke by Ciaran Kelly down to Adam Lynch and the latter elected not to gathered possession, instead he shot soccer style, a shot that was saved by Good Counsel ‘keeper Fionn Slattery but the loose ball went in off the net minder and gave Scoil Mhuire a 1-2 to 0-0 lead after 13 minutes.
At times Clane’s shooting could have been better but they did add to their tally on the 18 minute mark when Ciaran Kelly split the posts after a pass from Mark Mannion.
Before the interlude there was time for a second Clane goal, this time Kelly was the scorer when he got on the end of Shane MacCormack’s long ball in before firing low to the net to leave the scoreboard reading 2-3 to 0-0 at half time.
Good Counsel, despite not scoring for the first 30 minutes, knew they were still in with a shout as they had the advantage of a strong wind in the final half. They made their mark just 20 seconds after the throw in when Sean Kehoe gathered possession in the middle and played a long ball in to Luke Sinnott and the full forward sent a rasping shot past Liam Kennedy in the Clane net.
Just five minutes later and Kennedy was once again picking the ball from his own net. This time Sam Wall was the scoring and Clane’s lead was decreasing fast ( 2-4 to 2-0).
Points from Darragh Lyons, Sinnott (two) and Wall restored parity with ten minutes of normal time remaining. Clane’s back were against the wall but out they came and when Ciaran Kelly converted a free in the 53rd minute they nudged in front yet again. Indeed Kelly followed up with another free and when substitute Justin Reilly got in on the scoring act the Kildare school had a three point advantage (2-7 to 2-4) with time up.
Good Counsel, however, left the Scoil Mhuire boys shell shocked. In the first minute of stoppage time Thomas O’Connor blasted the ball to the net and incredibly a minute later Sinnott did likewise and when O’Connor sent over a point it was good night and good luck for the Scoil Mhuire boys.
Good Counse, Luke Sinnott 2-2, Thomas O’Connor 1-1, Sam Wall 1-1, Darragh Lyons 0-1.
Scoil Mhuire, Clane Ciaran Kelly 1-6 (3f), Adam Lynch 1-0, Justin Reilly 0-1.
Fionn Slattery; James O’Shea, Mark O’Neill, Rory Higgins; Richard Gill, Eoin Porter, Philip Foley; Darragh Lyons, Sean Kehoe; Emmet Coakley, Thomas O’Connor, Jack Byrne Doyle; Jamie Myler, Luke Sinnott, Sam Wall. Sub: Eric Cummins replaced E Coakley 34 mins.
Scoil Mhuire, Clane:
Liam Kennedy; Mark Brien, Liam Fennessy, Ruadhan Glover; Josh Byrne, Conor Curtis, Mark Mannion; Brian Giffney, Brian McLoughlin; Christopher Delaney, Sean Callan, Adam Lynch; David Kelly, Shane MacCormack, Ciaran Kelly. Subs: Conor Harris replaced A Lynch 25 mins, Adam Lynch replaced C Harris 50 mins, Justin Reilly replaced A lynch 55 mins.
Pat Moran (Laois).