LARAGH LAND THE CUP

Wicklow People (Arklow) - - SPORT - REF­EREE: Mat­tie Dowl­ing. RICHARD CLUNE at Bray

JU­NIOR A king­pins Laragh added an­other cup to their cab­i­net with a com­pre­hen­sive vic­tory over Ju­nior B cham­pi­ons Rath­new on Satur­day.

They were that lit­tle bit bet­ter all over the field with their at­tack­ing unit far su­pe­rior with­out mak­ing it count on the score­board.

It was a game that never re­ally got into a flow with lots of stop­ping and start­ing and missed chances adding to its stag­na­tion.

Laragh opened up the Rath­new de­fence at will with the likes of John Nolan get­ting on a lot of ball and caus­ing prob­lems while full for­ward Mark Mi­ley led Alan Clarke on a merry dance of Bray cre­at­ing space for his team­mates to ex­ploit.

They never cap­i­talised on this how­ever with a ball dropped or a pass go­ing astray mean­ing the chance was lost.

Rath­new were beaten by their own un­do­ing many times with passes go­ing astray and gift­ing pos­ses­sion back to Laragh.

James Hunter won a cou­ple of balls at full for­ward but Laragh full back Peter Mer­ri­gan was more than equal to the task at hand which was made much eas­ier mid­way through the first half when Keith Doyle was given a straight red card. Out­num­bered and with poor ser­vice Rath­new found it dif­fi­cult to get a score.

They reg­is­tered the first point of the game, Nigel Dar­ragh con­vert­ing a free won by Hunter, but Laragh hit back with 1-02 by the sixth minute.

John Nolan kicked a free when Steve Olo­han was fouled be­fore Olo­han got in on the act by split­ting the posts fol­low­ing a Gary Cullen in­ter­cep­tion to set up the at­tack.

From the kick out Laragh won the ball and Mark Mi­ley gained pos­ses­sion out­side the 45 with Alan Clarke for com­pany. Mi­ley launched a ball into the space he va­cated and Keith Lawlor pounced on the op­por­tu­nity for the game’s first goal.

There wasn’t an­other score for six­teen min­utes as the game turned scrappy and both teams, Laragh es­pe­cially, were guilty of miss­ing chances.

Hunter in­ex­pli­ca­bly let the ball out of his grasp af­ter a beau­ti­ful catch and turn left Mer­ri­gan for dead while Laragh kicked a num­ber of chances wide.

In the midst of it all Keith Doyle was given a straight red card as things got heated be­tween the teams.

They were also adamant that a goal should have stood which ref­eree Mat­tie Dowl­ing waved wide.

Rath­new goal­keeper John Sayer was beaten by a shot that came back off the legs of Bobby Dig­nam, act­ing as an um­pire, and then knocked into the net.

Dowl­ing said it was go­ing wide and there­fore gave a kick out whereas the Laragh man­age­ment were cer­tain it was either go­ing to hit the post or go­ing into the net be­fore the ball hit Dig­nam.

That cre­ated an­other flash point and brought a bit of life back into the game when it fallen into a lull and Josh Gra­ham kicked a point to get the score­board back work­ing.

Laragh re­sponded with 1-01, cor­ner for­wards Lawlor and Stephen Cur­ley do­ing the dam­age. Gra­ham con­verted a free just be­fore half time and Laragh led by 2-03 to 3 points at half time.

The sec­ond half was an­other low scor­ing af­fair and once Rath­new failed to launch a rea­son­able come­back it was all pretty el­e­men­tary for Laragh to win.

They were a lit­tle more clin­i­cal with the chances and sub­sti­tute Liam McEvoy got the third goal of the game.

He took a shot from the 21 that al­most cer­tainly was for a point but it looped over the Rath­new de­fence on the line into the top cor­ner.

It is the last match of a suc­cess­ful year for both teams and this Laragh team will cer­tainly look back on 2017 with joy as one of the great­est years in their his­tory.

They’ll give the In­ter­me­di­ate cham­pi­onship a good rat­tle next year.

Scor­ers – Laragh: Keith Lawlor 1-01; Stephen Cur­ley, Liam McEvoy 1-00 each; John Nolan (1f) 0-02; David Mc­Don­ald, Steve Olo­han, Mark Mi­ley 0-01 each.

Rath­new: Josh Gra­ham (2f) 0-03; Nigel Dar­ragh (f), James Hunter 0-01 each. LARAGH: James Nolan; Ross Doo­nan, Peter Mer­ri­gan, Ciaran Byrne; Craig McCoy, Gary Cullen, An­drew Kenny; David Mc­Don­ald, Damien Han­lon; John Nolan, Steve Olo­han, Aaron Lyn­ham; Stephen Cur­ley, Mark Mi­ley, Keith Lawlor. Subs: Myles Con­way for Aaron Lyn­ham, Liam McEvoy for Stephen Cur­ley (both HT); Dan Power for Steve Olo­han (40 mins); Alan Smyth for Ciaran Byrne, Bren­dan Ward for John Nolan (both 52 mins).

RATH­NEW: John Sayer; Chris Mur­phy, Alan Clarke, Eric Doyle; Luke Cor­co­ran, Lee Ka­vanagh, James Doyle; Tommy Doyle, Robert Byrne; Josh Gra­ham, Mick Nolan, Bryan Mur­phy; Keith Doyle, James Hunter, Nigel Dar­ragh. Subs: Gavin Byrne for Mick Nolan (BC), John Healy for Luke Cor­co­ran (both 35 mins); Dale Franey for Nigel Dar­ragh (37 mins); Jamie White for Bryan Mur­phy (52 mins).

Laragh cel­e­brate their Swan Cup suc­cess.

Mick Ha­gan and Ray Barry present the Swan Cup to Laragh cap­tains Peter Mer­ri­gan and Damien Han­lon.

Mark Mi­ley on the ball for Laragh.

Laragh’s Damien Han­lon is chased by Lee Ka­vanagh of Rath­new.

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