Crucial goals close door on League final appearance.
Date: 17th July 2015
Referee: Richard Morris
Full Time: St. Peter’s Dunboyne 2-09 Donaghmore Ashbourne 1-10
Half Time: St. Peter’s Dunboyne 1-08 Donaghmore Ashbourne 1-03
There is a saying in Gaelic games that “goals win games” and this was certainly the case when Donaghmore Ashbourne met St. Peter’s in a crucial Division 1A encounter in Dunboyne on Friday night. The visitors needed to record a victory to have any chance to book a place in the league final but two goals in either half at critical times gave the hosts a valuable home victory and effectively closed the door on Donaghmore Ashbourne’s chances of a league final appearance.
With an almost 20 minute delayed start the opening exchanges saw both teams approach the game with a slightly tentative approach as they tried to settle and adapt to the various positional changes across the pitch. Both sides registered early wides before the home side opened the scoring with a free on 6 minutes. St Peter’s raised the white flag again within a minute of this initial score and added a further score on 7 minutes to go 0-03 to 0-00 ahead. The home side could have made it 4 unanswered scores on 8 minutes but this attempt went wide while David Morgan opened Donaghmore Ashbourne’s account with a close range point from play on 9 minutes. Donaghmore Ashbourne did have a chance to reduce the deficit but a Shaun Byrne attempt from an acute angle went wide on 12 minutes and the home side regained their 3 point margin but point at the opposite end with a good move from the resulting kick out.
St. Peter’s missed a scorable free early in the second quarter and looked to have regretted that chance to extend the lead when David Morgan found himself in a one on one situation and fired low to the St. Peter’s net on 18 minutes to draw the sides level. Having weather the Dunboyne storm and managing to get back to parity Donaghmore Ashbourne fell asleep and conceded a goal a minute later as St. Peter’s regained their three point margin. This score seemed to spur on the home side and they extended their lead to 6 points with three unanswered points on 22, 23, and 25 minutes respectively.
Donaghmore Ashbourne did have another goal chance on 26 minutes when Morgan again found himself in another one on one situation but this time the St. Peter’s keeper pulled of a great save with Donaghmore Ashbourne failing to convert the resulting 45. Points from Eric Callaghan on 28 minutes and a fisted effort from Bryan Menton on 29 minutes did reduce the deficit but the home side had the final say of the opening half with an injury time point to head into the interval with a 1-08 to 1-03 lead.
With the aid of the breeze in the second half and knowing that they needed the victory Donaghmore Ashbourne started with a more offensive attitude but registered three early wides before Menton got the opening scoring of the half with a long range point from play on 38 minutes. Michael Deegan scored two consecutive points on 39 and 40 minutes as Donaghmore Ashbourne looked to be reeling in the home side. Conor Carton reduced the deficit to the minimum on 44 minutes when his long range ball from the midfield seem to evade the back line and bounce over the bar.
Substitute Mattie Devine brought the sides level when he pointed from play on 46 minutes as the visitors camped in the St. Peter’s half. However Donaghmore Ashbourne were dealt another hammer blow when St. Peter’s hit them with a counter attack and cancelled all the hard work when they scored their second goal on 48 minutes.
Although a disappointing score for Donaghmore Ashbourne to concede at a critical time in the game Paul Clarke’s men still tried to get something out of the game. Unfortunately they hit another two wides from play within the 5oth minute with St. Peter’s also missing a free on 52 minutes but Shaun Byrne did reduce the deficit with a 53rd minute point to leave St. Peter’s ahead by 2-08 to 1-09. The home side’s second score of the half came on 56 minutes with a point from play and was effectively enough to secure a result. Donaghmore Ashbourne did hit another wide and put another effort short in the closing minutes and although they tried to get a goal the home side held out. An injury time Deegan point was the final score of game but was not enough as the home side held out to move 4 points clear in the table with two games to go in the league.
Donaghmore Ashbourne: J. Hannigan, J.P. Casserly, C. McGill, C.Carton (0-1); T. Mc Govern, S. Melia, P. Gilligan; C. Carey, R. O’Connor; D. McGovern, B. Menton (0-2), M. Deegan (0-3), E. Callaghan(0-1), D. Morgan (1-1), S. Byrne (0-1)
Subs: C. Beirne for Callaghan (HT), M.Devine (0-1) for O’Connor (Black Card), C, Ellis for T. Mc Govern, C. Donnelly for Beirne (Black Card)