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Senior Men Topple League Leaders
Jun. 16, 2018
Senior League Division 2: Enniskillen Gaels 1-8 v 0-12 Belcoo
The Senior Men recorded a third straight league win as they held off a stoppage time rally from Enniskilllen Gaels who sat top of the table going into the fixture in Brewster Park on Friday night. The home side hit a late 1-1 in added time at the end of the contest but Belcoo, who played the final 17minutes with a man less, were worthy winners on a 0-12 to 1-8 scoreline.
It was an entertaining affair from the outset with some great passages of play, hard hits and well taken scores. Belcoo held sway for the majority of the tie, keeping the ball well before carving out their scores.
Aaron Dolan the first to raise the white flag however the home team did likewise moments later. The Gaels wouldn’t score again for some 20minutes. Belcoo’s defence, sharp to any balls played inside. Niall McGovern and Eoin Shiels in particular coming out with good ball. Moving forward Paul McGrath was the architect of the O’Rahilly’s scores with Philip Leonard and James McGrath showing well and winning anything sent their way. Conor McAloon tagged on the next point to move Belcoo ahead once more.
Paul McGrath would kick two points as Belcoo moved into a 0-4 to 0-1 lead by the 15th minute. There was a scoreless period, the best chance of note falling to a Gaels forward but Gary Doherty made an excellent save, diving to his left to beat away the shot.
The home side had their best 5minutes spell coming to half time as they kicked three in a row to level things up however Belcoo finished the half ahead. Philip Leonard kicked an outrageous point from the left corner after great work by Gerard McHugh while a long range effort by Paul McGrath struck the post but the rebound was fisted over the bar from close range by James McGrath for a 0-6 to 0-4 interval lead.
Belcoo were clinical in the second half as the broke downfield at great pace to take scores or win frees. Lung bursting runs from Gerard McHugh, Eoin Shiels, Paul McGrath and Ryan Leonard helped ease pressure and set up scores. Enniskillen had some good possession for periods but couldn’t really break through a solid visiting defence.
Belcoo extended their advantage when Paul McGrath slotted over a 25m free, he was involved in creating a point for Aaron Dolan having taken a good ball from Brian Cox while Philip Leonard drilled over another neat point as the O’Rahilly’s moved 0-9 to 0-4 ahead.
A converted free and a point from play by the Gaels brought them back into it and with James McGrath picking up a second yellow on 43minutes one would have thought Enniskillen would work themselves back to win the game, trailing 0-9 to 0-6 at the time.
Belcoo though had other ideas, Paul McGrath gained a kickout, raced down the field playing a number of one two’s, before slotting over a point. Next, the energetic Gerard McHugh turned over a ball in his own penalty area, 30seconds later he was at the other end of the field winning a free kick, McGrath slotted it over and Belcoo were now 5up at 0-11 to 0-6.
The Gaels popped over a free off their own but with 4minutes to play Belcoo made it a five point game again. Paul McGrath taking another kickout from Doherty before carrying the ball the length of the field, slipping Aaron Dolan in for a point.
The late onslaught from the Gaels followed, goals were required, high ball pumped in as the game moved into additional time. Niall McGovern came out with a good one, Eoin Shiels made a fine block, Brendan McPartland got a hand in, Dean McDermott stood Men up well. It was a collective effort from the O’Rahilly’s throughout.
There was to be a 63rd minute goal as a floated free was fisted to the net, a point swiftly followed and with the last kick the Gaels hit a wide, the referee certain it was wide as the umpires were unsure. It would have been cruel on a Belcoo had they not claimed victory. The sides do battle again next Saturday in Belcoo at 6.30pm.
Team. Gary Doherty, Eoin Shiels, Ryan Leonard, Brendan McPartland, Dean McDermott, Niall McGovern, Gerard McHugh, Christopher Leonard, James McGourty, Paul McGrath (0-5), Shane McAloon, Conor McAloon (0-1), Aaron Dolan (0-3), James McGrath (0-1), Philip Leonard (0-2). Subs Used. Brian Cox, Gary Maguire. Niall Cullen.
Senior League Division 2 Table:
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