Wednesday 17 January 2018

Rangers rule roost

Jason Goodison at Hollygrove

Gorey Rangers celebrate
Gorey Rangers celebrate
PJ Murphy presented Gorey Rangers captain with the cup
Ryan Boland (Gorey Rangers) Conor King (Forth Celtic)

An empathic second half performance fired Gorey Rangers to their first ever Wexford & District Schoolboys League Under-13 Cup at the expense of Forth Celtic in North End on Sunday.

The Showgrounds side dominated the second half to ensure they would go one better than they had done in this year's league campaign and take the cup home to Gorey.

However, the opening half hour was a much more even affair and at the interval few would have guessed that Rangers would come out such comfortable winners.

The Celtic defence of Conor Monaghan, Paul Redmond, Conor King and Zach Breslin withstood some early pressure well, allowing just one chance in the opening quarter.

Rian Fitzpatrick found striking partner Ben Fitzpatrick but the latter was denied by alert James Donnelly goalkeeping.

Growing more and more into the tie with the help of crafty midfielder Evan Farrell and dangerous wingers John O'Sullivan and Josh Kelly, Forth began to create chances.

Sam Norval struggled to find the power to beat Alan Hayes while Rory Devereux linked up well with Kelly before feeding Farrell who's shot from distance was straight down Hayes' throat.

Rangers had their equal share of opportunities too, Rian Fitzpatrick was proving a handful in-behind when while Tom Wheatley saw his header cleared off the line by Mountain defender Redmond.

Yet, almost directly from the restart the shift in control was noticeable. Wheatley's corner was tipped away only as far as Rian Fitzpatrick who's shot took a major deflection before squirming into the back of the net past Donnelly.

Gorey's lead was doubled moments later as the stunned Murrintown side failed to come to terms with going a goal down.

A surging run by man of the match Rian Fitzpatrick carved open the defence before the striker found teammate Jack Gleeson on the edge of the area. Glesson's unstoppable right footed strike thundered into the top left corner of the net leaving Forth Celtic with a mountain to climb.

It would prove to be an impenetrable mountain for the dejected boys in green, a couple of Farrell shots from distance were all Celtic could manage before the third late goal removed all hope.

The fresh legs of Dara O'Connor marauded unchallenged into the opposition penalty are before squaring to Ben Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick made no mistake in getting his name on the scoresheet as he placed calmly past the advancing 'keeper.

GOREY RANGERS: Alan Hayes; Lee Cushe, Corey Simpson-Brown, Brian Cushe, Scott Dixon; Tom Wheatley, Cormac Doyle (capt.), Eoin Murphy, Jack Gleeson; Rian Fitzpatrick, Ben Fitzpatrick. Subs (Rolling): Ayman Allain, Ryan Boland, Liam Lynch, Conor McCarthy, Dara O'Connor.

FORTH CELTIC: James Donnelly; Conor Monaghan, Paul Redmond, Conor King, Zach Breslin; John O'Sullivan, Kevin Reck, Evan Farrell (capt.), Josh Kelly; Rory Devereux, Sam Norval. Subs (Rolling): Josh Doyle, Christopher Ryan, Ronan Griffin, Derry Crowley, Odhran O'Sullivan.

REFEREE: Martin Kenny.

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