Shels survive strong revival
Stars' comeback all in vain
Sarsfields came all the way back from eleven points down with five minutes remaining to within a kick of the ball, but it was all in vain as Shelmaliers backed up their victory over Adamstown with another winning two points in the Tom Doyle Supplies Senior football championship Group A in Wexford Park on Sunday.
Shelmaliers 3-11 Sarsfields 3-8
Overall it was a better performance for the Páirc Charman crew having fallen meekly to Fethard in their first outing. Lee Chin, at full-forward, was the catalyst for the comeback with 2-1 in the last five minutes plus added time.
When the Sars got the ball in and around the county hurler good things happened. It's a formula they will likely look to develop, despite the fact that he will be missed further out the field.
Shelmaliers would have expected to pick up the points and they were worthy of the win. Their forwards' inter-change was much slicker than their opponents and they are undoubtedly contenders for the title.
Sarsfields played with the breeze in the first-half but could only exchange scores with their Wexford District opponents through the period. Two excellent points from Stephen Banville and a minor from Eoghan Nolan gave the Shels a one-point lead at 0-4 to 0-3.
Lee Chin got one of those scores back for the Wexford town side but it was the introduction of Philip Cullen that breathed life into their attack. His leveller for 0-4 each saw him ghost in between two defenders and pop over from just outside the '20.
The teams were still level when Craig McCabe finished off a move involving Graham Staples and Brian Malone to give Shels a 1-5 to 0-6 lead at the interval.
The Hollymount side lost Clive Lawler to a nasty looking knee injury before the break and that might be a serious loss going forward. It's didn't stop them profiting in the second-half as McCabe flicked Eoghan Nolan's long ball to the net to help them into a 2-7 to 0-6 lead after 36 minutes.
Eoin Roche goaled after great work by Chin to close the gap again, but four points and a punched Liam Donnelly goal followed to eased Shelmaliers 3-11 to 1-6 clear. Sarsfields never gave up and cut the deficit with a pair of well-taken Chin goals but time eventually ran out on the revival.
Shelmaliers: Conor Byrne; Andre O'Brien, Eoin Doyle, Ciarán O'Shaughnessy; Simon Donohoe (capt.), Clive Lawler, Páuric O'Leary; Aidan Cash (0-2), Brian Malone; Glen Malone (0-1), Stephen Banville (0-2), Graham Staples; Craig McCabe (2-2, 0-1 free), Eoghan Nolan (0-1), Brian Doyle (0-1). Sub. - Liam Donnelly (1-2) for Lawlor, inj. (30 + 4).
Sarsfields: Adam Doyle; Colm Heffernan, Michael Hanrahan (capt.), Cillian Lawlor; Brendan Mulligan, David Mooney, Con O Donnagáin; Ciarán Kirwan (0-1), Jamie McDonnell; John Bridges (0-1 free), Eoin Roche (1-0), Fran Cleary; Lee Chin (2-2), Rhys Clarke, Seán Pailing (0-2). Subs. - Philip Cullen (0-2, 1 free) for O Donnagáin, inj. (14), Seán O Corcora for Heffernan, inj. (35), Conor Halligan for Clarke (42), Shane Wilde for Roche, inj. (48).
Referee: Fintan O'Reilly (Kilmore).