Kiltegan finally shake off Aughrim in replay
Kiltegan 4-8, Aughrim 4- 4: Kiltegan finally advanced to the quarterfinal of the Junior C football championship after another hectic battle with Aughrim, this time played under lights at Annacurra recently. NDI JCFC REPLAY The Kiltegan defence struck a major blow for victory when they managed to keep the star of the show, or at least the man mainly responsible for getting out another big crowd – rugby international Shane Byrne – off the scoresheet..
However, that was only part of their problem solved. Another Aughrim veteran and G.A.A. star Eugene O’Brien looked like he might wreck the plans of the men from the west.
Not for the first time ‘Susie’ teased and tormented a defence and finished up top scorer with 3-3. In fact he set up the other Aughrim goal for Niall Carroll.
But Kiltegan had a star of their own – a man called ‘ Judy’, the manager of the team.
It was his half-time reshuffle that sent Kiltegan on their way. He pulled back Gerry Boland to mark ‘ Susie’ and while he did not manage to keep him off the scoresheet he did reduce his effectiveness. Moving Brian Byrne to centre-back, Eoin Kelly to midfield and bringing on Johnny Kehoe up front were other master moves.
Liam Kavanagh gave Kiltegan a dream start with an early goal and two points by another impressive veteran Nigel Byrne had Kiltegan 1-2 up.
Carroll’s goal in the tenth minute and another by O’Brien himself had the sides level.
Susie and Frank Byrne pointed to put Aughrim in front but a point by Nigel Byrne point and a great goal by Brian Byrne left Kiltegan leading by 2-4 to 2-2 at halftime.
The battle continued through the second-half. Ray Kelly sent sub Johnny Kehoe through for a goal that appeared to have sealed the issue but no sooner had the green flagged dropped at one end than ‘Susie’ had it waving at the other.
Nigel Byrne sent a free to the Aughrim net but again our man of the match Susie raced through the Kiltegan defence for another green flag.
The impressive Liam Kavanagh sealed victory for Kiltegan with a late point.
So while Shane Byrne got a good chance to sample Gaelic gootball again, and enjoyed it, he must wait a while longed to collect his first championship medal