St. Pat's pip Kilanerin
They were hanging on in the end but St. Patrick's just about deserved their victory against Kilanerin in the Joyces Expert Intermediate 'A' football championship Group A at Monamolin on Saturday.
St. Patrick's 0-9 Kilanerin 0-8
The Ballyoughter boys desperately needed the points if they were to realistically retain dreams of making the knockout stages, and they did just enough in a 15-minute spell after half-time, scoring six points in a row, to do just that.
Indeed, the victory might have been a lot greater. St. Pat's missed a succession of frees, some of them not particularly difficult, to allow their opponents a foothold in the tie right up to the last few moments.
Kilanerin began the game playing the better football. Much of their quality came through the middle with the evergreen John Hegarty and the dangerous Emmett O'Toole teaming up time and again.
O'Toole and Tomás Morris had exchanged points before Hegarty opened his account in the ninth minute. Shane Finn tied up the contest again to leave the sides deadlocked at the end of the opening quarter (0-2 each).
One of Hegarty's last involvements was to put his club back in front before he was forced off with an injury. O'Toole gave Kilanerin a double-scores lead but it lasted just four minutes before John Doyle replied with a booming effort from just inside the '45.
Michael Byrne gave his side a 0-5 to 0-3 lead in added-time, an advantage that was added to by Michael Hegarty two minutes after the resumption. From 0-6 to 0-3 down, St. Patrick's kicked six points in a row.
The introduction of Michael O'Brien was a big bonus at the start of the period. His breaks from midfield, with those of Doyle, helped the Camolin-based club to kick-on. Tommy Dunne and Tynan Flynn (two) were among the scorers as their side moved 0-9 to 0-6 ahead by the 49th minute.
After O'Toole cut the gap to two, Tommy Boland hit the crossbar with a dipping effort. Byrne's 57th-minute point narrowed the deficit to one but, after Michael Hegarty was dismissed, Kilanerin never went close to grabbing a draw.
St. Patrick's: Mark Furlong; James Cousins (capt.), Richie Flood, Peter Roche; Hughie Doyle, Dermot O'Leary, Daryl Murphy; John Doyle (0-2), Michael Carroll; Tommy Morris, Shane Finn (0-2), Tommy Dunne (0-1 free); Tomás Morris (0-2), Ashley Tully, Tynan Flynn (0-2). Subs. - Michael O'Brien for Carroll (31), Niall O'Brien for Cousins, black card (50), Lorcan Hamilton for Tully (54), Ian McGuire for Tomás Morris (60).
Kilanerin: Eoin Lucey; Enda O'Leary, Edward Hughes, Shane O'Toole; Aidan Hegarty, Lorcan Clare, Donnchadh McDonald; Niall Gethings, Mark Gethings; Andrew Murphy, John Hegarty (0-2), Willie Murphy; Michael Hegarty (0-1), Emmett O'Toole (capt., 0-3, 2 frees), Michael Byrne (0-2). Sub. - Tommy Boland for J. Hegarty, inj. (24).
Referee: Francis Neville (Shelmaliers).