Impressive Wolfe Tone close in on the leaders
FOCUS MATCH WICKLOW LEAGUE DIVISION 1
Wolfe Tone Celtic 3, St. Peter’s Bhoys B 0: Wolfe Tone Celtic moved to within touching distance of top spot after this comfortable victory over Bray rivals St. Peter’s Bhoys.
They took an early lead through Stuart Purcell before Conor Whelan added to it before the break. The three points were secured late on in the game when a scramble in the box led to an unfortunate own goal.
Stuart Purcell’s opener was undoubtedly the goal of the game, and huge credit must go to Darren Neiland for creating it. With the ball under his control on the half-way line, Neiland looked up before releasing a perfectly measured ball beyond the outstretched defender’s leg and into the box for Keith Maloney. Maloney then showed good feet for a big fella by controlling quickly before squaring to Harris who calmly sent the ball past Thomas Horan in the Peter’s net.
There was then a lull in the game of about half an hour where bar a few Darren McAteer long rangers there was little to keep spectators amused with defences dominating.
A handball allowed the visitors Tony Harris a chance from a 25-yard free-kick on 38 minutes but the number 10 sent it over the bar.
Three minutes later the hosts doubled their lead. Wicklow Youth captain Graham Devlin did all the hard work but when the ball fell to Conor Whelan, he poked home the rebound after his initial shot had been blocked away.
After the break the tempo of the match picked up and both sides were able to carve out a few more opportunities.
The first of those fell to the home side’s Keith Maloney when he squandered a fantastic opportunity to put the game beyond doubt after he blasted over after being put through on goal.
On 65 minutes Darren McAteer’s free-kick from the edge of the box couldn’t get past the wall and two minutes later Peter’s captain James McLoughlin 25-yard free kick beat the wall but not the hugely impressive Warren Carton in Wolfe Tone’s net.
It was in the 75th minute when Wolfe Tone got that elusive third goal and while it won’t be winning any goal of the month competitions, it was a very significant one for the title hopefuls.
The home side let their feet off the pedals after this but Warren Carton could do no such thing as he was forced into a number of brilliant saves by the visitors as he looked to maintain his clean sheet.
It was a well deserved victory for the home side but Peter’s shouldn’t be too disheartened by the defeat as they still sit just five points off the top in Division 1 and have plenty to play for as we go into the Christmas break.
Man of the Match: Graham Devlin (Wolfe Tone Celtic). Tore the opposition defence apart time and time again.
Rupert Meaney of Wolfe Tone Celtic and Jamie Quiney of St. Peter’s battle for possession.
Graham Devlin of Wolfe Tone holds off the challenge of Mark O’Sullivan.