Kilanerin jump into first place
Kilanerin 0-15 St. Mary's (Maudlintown) 1-9
Kilanerin finished in a blaze of points to move into top spot in Group B of the Amber Springs/Ashdown Park Hotels Intermediate football championship in St. Patrick's Park on Sunday.
The Gorey District side looked to be in real trouble when Dermot Flood leapt like a salmon to cut out Niall Hughes' handpass and broke towards goal. His feed to set Eddie Pitman free was perfect and the St. Mary's attacker calmly dispatched past Tom Hughes.
At that point in proceedings Maudlintown held a 1-9 to 0-11 lead with just five minutes to go. However, their opponents immediately called cavalry from the bench, with Matty Forde making an unanticipated appearance.
It would be poetically beautiful to say the former Wexford man changed the game but in reality it was the increased workrate and dogged determination of his team-mates that altered the course of the tie.
A game that was meandering towards a conclusion burst to life and Kilanerin motored on. Bobby Hughes, a consistent performer throughout, kicked his side level before Rhys Owley landed a booming effort from the right touchline.
Forde tapped over a free with minimum fuss after a foul on Brendan Hobbs and Niall Hughes rounded out a successful evening for Kilanerin with a clinching score with the second-last kick of the game.
A lot of what came before it wasn't overly exhilarating. Two fairly evenly-matched, already qualified, sides cancelled each other out in the first-half. Kilanerin were somewhat disadvantaged by two early enforced changes but Gearóid O Súlleabháin did come on and kicked a pair of classy points.
Donal O'Leary got the pick of the scores for St. Mary's, a tidy finish from Roy Doyle's handpass after the side from the Rocks built with patience down the right before working play to the left. All in all, 0-5 each was a fair reflection on the first-half action.
It really was more of the same after the interval. St. Mary's led by a point all the way up to 0-8 to 0-7 but invariably Bobby Hughes was involved in keeping his side in the game until the dramatic, high-tempo ending.
Kilanerin: Tom Hughes; Aidan Jones, Richard Hughes, Cathal O'Reilly; Gavin O'Toole, Colm Kavanagh (capt.), Conor Byrne; Niall Breen, Brendan Hobbs (0-1); Mark Gethings, Niall Hughes (0-2 frees), Mark Boland; Peter Hughes, Dean O'Toole (0-1), Bobby Hughes (0-7, 3 frees). Subs. - Gearóid O Súilleabháin (0-2) for P. Hughes, inj. (6), Tomás Owley for Kavanagh, black card (8), Rhys Owley (0-1) for Byrne (31), Matty Forde (0-1 free) for O Súilleabháin (57), Tommy Boland for Gethings (60).
St. Mary's: Paul Dempsey; Alan Lynch (capt.), Alex Lynch, Mark Doyle; Ross Lynch, Graham Carty, Jamie Thomas; Robert Kenny, Dermot Flood (0-4, 3 frees); Eddie Pitman (1-1), Donal O'Leary (0-2), Gavin Cullen; Pierce Dooley (0-1), Roy Doyle, Jason Swords (0-1). Subs. - Paul O'Connor for Cullen, black card (32), Daniel Lynch for O'Leary (53), Andy Lehane for R. Doyle, black card (57).
Referee: Shane Quinn (Réalt na Mara).