Ark­low Un­der-15s out of Evans Cup

Bray People - - Sport -

Mervue United 2, Ark­low Town 1: Lady luck de­serted Ark­low Town U15s on Satur­day last as they ex­ited this sea­son’s SFAI Evans Cup af­ter a nar­row 2-1 de­feat away at Gal­way’s Mervue United.

Town, un­beaten all sea­son, made the long jour­ney west fully ap­pre­cia­tive of the tough task fac­ing them against their re­spected op­po­si­tion. Me­vue started brightly, dic­tat­ing the pace of the game and their early dom­i­nance yielded a for­tu­itous goal af­ter one of their for­ward play­ers was clearly in an off­side po­si­tion be­fore scor­ing. How­ever, much to Ark­low’s an­noy­ance, the goal was al­lowed to stand.

The set­back ap­peared to fo­cus the ef­forts of the Town side as they be­gan to get a foothold in the game. Mid­way through the half Mark Hardy thought he had lev­elled but his goal-bound strike was su­perbly saved by the home keeper.

Alan Sun­der­land and John Kearon both went close with ef­forts be­fore half time but once again the Mervue keeper stood firm. Ark­low main­tained their drive for an equaliser in the sec­ond-half and the game opened up with chances fall­ing to both sides.

Sun­der­land shot nar­row- ly wide and in the fol­low­ing Ark­low at­tack Ian Reid saw his ef­fort from out­side the penalty area beat the Mervue keeper, but not the cross­bar. In the scram­ble John Kearon ag­o­nis­ingly saw his ef­fort rise above the bar and over.

Mervue went close to dou­bling their lead but were foiled by a mag­nif­i­cent save from Town’s An­thony Nolan. But ten min­utes from time the Gal­way side grabbed that pre­cious sec­ond goal, con­vert­ing from a cor­ner-kick.

Ark­low pulled one back with five min­utes re­main­ing af­ter ex­cel­lent work from Ian Reid al­lowed Mark Hardy in to shoot low past the Gal­way keeper. Town pressed for a sec­ond goal in a fran­tic end to the game but to no avail as the full time whis­tle en­sured, for a sec­ond sea­son run­ning, that Town’s in­ter­est in na­tional cup com­pe­ti­tion ended.

There was gen­uine dis­ap­point­ment in not ad­vanc­ing to the last 16 of the com­pe­ti­tion hav­ing put in an ex­cel­lent team per­for­mance, each and ev­ery player play­ing their part. Gal­way has proven to be an un­lucky hunt­ing ground for this Town side as last year they ex­ited the SFAI Good­son Cup at the quar­ter fi­nal stage hav­ing lost 3-1 at Salthill Devon.

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