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Tight U14 Tussle Ends Level in Teemore
Apr. 29, 2017
Under 14 Division 2: Teemore 5-6 v 5-6 Belcoo
A late Josh Killilea pointed free ensured Belcoo returned from Teemore with a share of the spoils in what was another tough and tense battle between the two sides. Last Saturday seen these two teams play out a marathon Feile Final and yet again, they couldn't be separated today at full time following a 5-6 to 5-6 draw. It was a second league game in the space of three days and could well prove to be an important point for the O'Rahilly's come the end of the league.
Belcoo were badly off the pace in the opening half and in truth, they never hit the heights of Thursday nights win in Ederney. Some of their decision making on the ball was questionable during a somewhat subdued display that unfortunately lacked discipline at times too.
Conor McKeown powers out from the defence in the opening half
Teemore began much brighter and had two early points on the board via Jack McGann and Fionan McGrath. Belcoo's sluggish opening seen them take 10minutes to have a decent spell. Dara Flanagan was to knock over a free kick before the O'Rahilly's squandered two glorious goal chances. A long ball from Flanagan found Emmett McGuinness in behind the Teemore defence, McGuinness bore down on goal but cracked his shot against the crossbar.
Soon after Oisin O'Loughlin drove upfield playing a number of one-two's before he slipped Michael Burns through on goal, the forward though seen his effort saved by the feet of goalkeeper Jason McGovern. Despite the two chances at goal, Belcoo did level for the first time when Patrick Martin popped over from the left wing.
The sides traded points with Jack McGann edging his side back in front before Josh Killilea slotted over for Belcoo however Teemore were to register their first goal as an underhit free ricocheted around the goalmouth for an attacker to prod into the net.
Jack McGann was to power through for a point and he drove in for a goal moments later. Belcoo though managed to pull one back when Dara Flanagan netted from close range while Josh Killilea popped over another point to cut the deficit to three at the interval. Half Time Teemore 2-4 v 1-4 Belcoo.
Ben McNulty attempts to clear downfield under pressure from Aaron Lee
The O'Rahilly's had struggled going forward in the first period, Emmett McGuinness the liveliest of the attack while the defence again did pretty well to curtail a lively Teemore front line.
Belcoo were to produce a much improved second half, despite Jack McGann extending Teemore's advantage with a point, Belcoo rallied.
The hardworking Gerry Nolan in the middle of the field drove his side on with Killilea, McGuinness and O'Loughlin seeing plenty of the ball. Dara Flanagan was the man to find the net when the ball was worked upfield. Flanagan banged in two goals in a four minute period to give his side the lead, 3-4 to 2-5.
Sean Boylan breaks forward in the second period for Belcoo
The O'Rahilly's were on top and had done well to pin Teemore back at this time. Flanagan was about to pull the trigger for another goal but was dragged down by Jack McGann. The Teemore man avoided a card and having spoken out of turn, a certain point from the free became a throw up ball. McGann would win the restart and down the field the Shamrocks went. Ethan Prunty rifled in an excellent goal while McGann followed up with a goal and point to open up a five point lead on a 4-6 to 3-4 scoreline.
It could well have been worse but for a stunning save by Jamie Ray to deny McGann on 43minutes. Conor McKeown was working well at the back and finding blue jerseys with clever passes. Despite the deficit, Belcoo were more up for the battle in this half, Colum Higgins and Ben McNulty turned over ball at important times with Sean Boylan sticking tight to his man. Daniel O'Connor was getting more involved supporting the attacks while Killilea, McGuinness and Nolan were still at the heart of their sides best work.
Emmett McGuinness was to register a goal while Killilea slotted over a point to leave just one between them, 4-6 to 4-5 with 8minutes to play.
What followed was another good few minutes from Belcoo but they missed three chances, Eoin Corrigan, Dara Flanagan and Killilea all fired narrowly wide going for points. Teemore, having weathered the storm broke downfield and full forward Cian Murchy found the bottom corner of the net with a crisp shot.
Colum Higgins holds on tight to the ball as he gains possession
Four between them with four minutes to play, Gerry Nolan stepped forward to carry his side upfield, Nolan linked with Daniel O'Connor and Cian White on the right before playing the ball into Dara Flanagan who gathered and fired to the net. 5-6 to 5-5.
The goal setup a frantic final few minutes, it was thrilling stuff. Cian White had his best spell of the game, retaining a number of balls played into him, with Eoin Corrigan showing well but again it was Gerry Nolan who galvanised side having stopped Jack McGann, he set Belcoo on their way for the games final attack. It was as good a move as the O'Rahilly's put together during the whole game, slick passes, through the hands, to the chest with support runners they weaved into a scoreable position before being taken down.
Josh Killilea stepped up to tie the contest from the placed ball. It was one of those games that could have been won or lost. The draw may prove important in the long run and the O'Rahilly's did well to salvage a point in stoppage time. The two teams will do battle again in Belcoo this coming Thursday evening. Throw in 7pm. Training continues Tuesday for 1 hour from 7pm to 8pm.
Team (15 a side). Jamie Ray, Ben McNulty, Oisin O'Loughlin, Colum Higgins, Daniel O'Connor, Conor McKeown, Josh Killilea (0-4), Gerry Nolan, Dara Flanagan (4-1), Michael Burns, Sean Boylan, Eoin Corrigan, Emmett a McGuinness (1-0), Patrick Martin (0-1), Cian White.
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