Anne’s pip Hogues for U-20 fi­nal place

Enniscorthy Guardian - - SPORT - BRIAN CARTY


A DREARY first-half made way for a hugely en­ter­tain­ing sec­ond pe­riod as two goals in the fi­nal quar­ter steered St. Anne’s into the Green­star Un­der-20 foot­ball Di­vi­sion 3 cham­pi­onship de­cider af­ter a 3-6 to 2-8 vic­tory over hosts Ballyhogue in Satur­day’s semi-fi­nal played at a wet Bree.

It was hard to en­vis­age the drama that would fol­low af­ter a low-key opener as nei­ther side could stamp any form of au­thor­ity in the greasy con­di­tions, al­though not for the want of try­ing.

In­deed, Philip Raw­son and Dar­ragh Fur­long for St. Anne’s and Enda Minogue for Ballyhogue all found them­selves in promis­ing sit­u­a­tions in front of goal at var­i­ous stages but lacked the ex­e­cu­tion to rattle the net.

Iron­i­cally, the goal that did give the lo­cals the ini­tia­tive came from rather for­tu­nate means as Liam Ros­siter linked up with Cian Wick­ham and his shot at the posts ended in the top corner to open a 1-2 to 0-3 half-time lead.

St. Anne’s hit the last two points be­fore the break through Brian Ka­vanagh and Páraic Reville, and two of their po­tent op­tions in the full-for­ward line re­ally came to the fore af­ter the in­ter­val to just about nudge the Rathangan men through.

Fur­long pos­sesses a se­ri­ous turn of foot, and he used that as­set to his ad­van­tage on 35 min­utes to surge through and put the sim­plest of fin­ishes on the plate for Dy­lan O’Brien (1-3 each).

Still, Matt Browne got for­ward to sweep Ballyhogue back in front, while on the op­po­site wing, Colm Par­nell made the de­ci­sive burst for­ward in the build-up to Wick­ham flick­ing into the path of Conor Ros­siter to drive low to the net for a 2-4 to 1-4 lead.

Two Dean Doyle points fol­lowed (one free), only for St. Anne’s to goal again on 46 min­utes as Conor Ryan forced the turnover and sup­plied Fur­long for a calm rolled fin­ish.

O’Brien was an out­stand­ing out­let at full-for­ward for the vic­tors, kick­ing the equaliser on 52 min­utes be­fore his quickly-taken free pin-balled around the square and Fur­long even­tu­ally placed soc­cer-style into the top corner as they forged a pre­cious 3-6 to 2-7 ad­van­tage with three min­utes of reg­u­la­tion time to play.

Doyle’s well-mea­sured free off the floor had the min­i­mum be­tween the sides as the clock ticked into in­jury time, but Ballyhogue couldn’t fash­ion one last score to force par­ity as in­stead St. Anne’s con­firmed a de­cider against Rath­garogue Cushin­stown or Ferns St. Ai­dan’s.

St. Anne’s: Dy­lan Ka­vanagh; Vin­cent Car­roll, An­drew Walsh, Michael Car­roll; Barry Roche, Finn O’Driscoll (capt.), Brian Ka­vanagh (0-1); Ben Moore, Páraic Reville (0-1); Criostóir Reville, Andy Kennedy (0-2, 1 free), Philip Raw­son; Kevin Byrne, Dy­lan O’Brien (1-1), Dar­ragh Fur­long (2-1). Subs. - Conor Ryan for Raw­son (42), Barry Stone for Walsh (46), Paddy White for P. Reville (60+2).

Ballyhogue: Dar­ragh Rochford; Cian Rochford, Shane Fen­lon, Ed­ward Byrne; Colm Par­nell, Dar­ragh Byrne (capt.), Matt Browne (0-1); Enda Minogue, Peter Kelly; Cian Wick­ham, Nick Doyle, Tadhg Malone; Liam Ros­siter (1-0), Dean Doyle (0-7, 4 frees), Conor Ros­siter (1-0). Subs. - Ro­nan Byrne for C. Rochford, inj. (8), Peter Rodgers for Wick­ham (47).

Ref­eree: Bren­dan Holo­han (Rath­garogue-Cushin­stown).

Man of the match Daire Bar­den rac­ing away from Cathal McCabe.

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