AGB sur­vive real scare to se­cure brag­ging rights

Wicklow People (Arklow) - - SPORT - JBFC

AGB sur­vived a real scare from Avon­dale to se­cure brag­ging rights in this Ju­nior B cham­pi­onship game last Thurs­day in Pearse’s Park.

In a topsy turvy game where both teams en­joyed pro­longed pe­ri­ods of dom­i­nance it was AGB’s fin­ish to the first half that prob­a­bly was the dif­fer­ence.

Avon­dale started well and led 1-2 to 0-2 af­ter the first ten min­utes. Their goal was an exquisite chip over the goal­keeper by Cal­lum Pursey from a dif­fi­cult an­gle. Jack Man­ley was show­ing very well for Avon­dale and he was play­ing plenty of good passes in side to where Pursey and Ian Hef­fer­nan were lively.

Alan McBride con­verted a penalty for AGB af­ter Ross McBride was fouled on a rare break up field for them as Avon­dale con­tin­ued to dom­i­nate around the mid­dle. Avon­dale through Pursey, Ian Hef­fer­nan and Shane Birch with a boom­ing long-range score re­stored a four-point lead again by the 17th minute and were look­ing com­fort­able at this stage.

They missed plenty of other op­por­tu­ni­ties too and could well have been out of sight by the time AGB started their fight­back.

Donal O’Ke­effe pointed be­fore Gar­ret Kenny rat­tled the net af­ter a fine build up to tie it up at 2-2 to 1-5.

The home side kicked the last four points of the half with a McBride free added to with a brace of points from mid­fielder Johnathon Doyle and another O’Ke­effe score to leave them lead­ing 2-6 to 1-5 at the break.

The hard run­ning and ball car­ry­ing of Mark Fitzger­ald, Jack Darcy and Ross MacBride along with Tom Hur­ley get­ting on top at cen­tre back was cen­tral to their change in for­tune at that time.

Donal O’Ke­effe who was show­ing well at full for­ward opened the sec­ond half scor­ing with a point be­fore a change in tac­tics from Avon­dale opened the game up again.

Michael Shee­han had come on at full for­ward and they started to de­liver long di­rect ball in­side and he caused all sorts of prob­lems for the AGB full-back line.

Hef­fer­nan pointed from play and the hard-work­ing Darren Beevor also pointed as they sought a way back.

Dar­ragh Cul­leton lifted the siege some­what with a pointed free but go­ing in to the last ten min­utes it was AGB who were hanging on to a 2-9 to 1-9 lead.

Shee­han con­tin­ued to cause prob­lems and Avon­dale were al­most in for a lev­el­ling goal but for the quick re­ac­tions of Kyle O’Con­nor in the AGB goal who cleared away for a 45. By now AGB had brought Donal O’Ke­effe back to help out in their back line but he still found time to kick their last score of the game in the 52nd minute.

All Avon­dale had to show for their ef­forts in the last seven min­utes was a point from Ian Hef­fer­nan as AGB held out for the win. Paddy Kin­sella, Kieran Penn and Michael O’Dea formed a fine half back line for Avon­dale all evening and were the plat­form for many of their at­tacks.

Scor­ers - AGB: Johnathon Doyle 0-2, Dar­ragh Cul­leton 0-2, (1f, 145), Alan McBride 1-1 (1-0 pen, 1f), Mark Fitzger­ald 0-1, Gar­ret Kenny 1-0, Donal O’Ke­effe 0-4.

Avon­dale: Jack Man­ley 0-2, Darren Beevor 0-1, Shane Birch 0-1, Cal­lum Pursey 1-1, Ian Hef­fer­nan 0-5 (2f).

AGB: Kyle O’Con­nor; Michael O’Sul­li­van, Paul O’Dono­hoe, Bren­dan O’Sul­li­van; Shane Dono­hoe, Tom Hur­ley, Corey Mills; Johnathon Doyle, Dar­ragh Cul­leton; Ross McBride, Alan McBride, Mark Fitzger­ald, Gar­ret Kenny, Donal O’Ke­effe, Jack Darcy. Subs: Gary Fen­nel for B O’Sul­li­van, Ger Ka­vanagh for R MacBride, Ste­wart Mills for Darcy.

Avon­dale: Har­ri­son Penn: Conor Penn, Conor Shee­han, Paul McGann; Michael O’Dea, Kieran Penn, Paddy Kin­sella; Sea­mus McGraynor, Jack Man­ley; Darren Beevor, Shane Birch, Donal McGraynor; Ross Merry, Cal­lum Pursey, Ian Hef­fer­nan. Subs: Michael Shee­han for Merry, James Busher for Birch.

Ref­eree: Kieron Kenny

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