Newtown turn on the style
NEWTOWN 2-16 HOLLYWOOD 0-8
NEWTOWN turned on the style in hugely impressive fashion to devour Hollywood and secure their Senior football safety by seizing fourth spot in Group 1 thanks to this stunning victory in Aughrim on Saturday evening.
As the sun set in the west it was the Magpies who produced the magic in a performance that was certainly in them all season and, albeit against a Hollywood side who will no doubt be glad when this season is over, Damien Gilligan’s men looked lethal over the 60 minutes with Ross Davis in particular in untouchable form.
Hollywood had no answer to Newtown on Saturday and this defeat, their fourth of the campaign, their only victory coming against Kiltegan in Baltinglass, has condemned them to a Keating Trophy competition that will test their mettle to the very limits as they join the aforementioned Kiltegan, Éire Óg and Baltinglass in the battle for Senior survival.
Gilligan’s charges turned in a first-half performance that will live long in the memories of the tiny crowd in Aughrim and the players in the Newtown jerseys. The Magpies tormented their opponents as they played with a freedom and an energy that the Hollywood men just couldn’t handle.
The deadly duo of Ross Davis and Sean Gregory were the tormentors in chief, but they were ably assisted by Conor Odlum, Sean Heffernan, Declan Doyle, Darragh Callan while big shifts were delivered from Paul O’Riordan and Mark Fitzsimons in the middle.
Shane Mooney played a captain’s part and dominated his position.
Lee Turner and Neil Martin closed down the wide channels while Robert Greennan turned in a massive display for his side befroe going off injured late on.
John O’Donohue was solid at full-back on a day when Hollywood failed to bag a major and Karl Carthy and goalkeeper Thomas Maher completed a superb starting 15 on the day.
Hollywood would only score two points in the first half to Newtown’s thumping 2-12, the goals from Declan Doyle after 25 and a wonder strike by Conor Odlum to the top corner of Jamie Tutty’s net close to the death of the first half.
Ross Davis would account for half of the dozen first-half points (two frees and a sublime score from a sideline ball on the stand
side) as he blitzed the Hollywood defence.
Sean Gregory (2), Neil Martin, Shane Mooney, Sean Heffernan and Conor Odlum would complete the scoring for the first half for Damien Gilligan’s marauders.
The hard-working Cian Tyrrell bagged Hollywood’s opener after 11 minutes while Thomas Burke would point a free won by Mikey Healy after 27 for their first-half total and but for the heroics of Rob Houlihan and Jamie Tutty Newtown would have had four goals in that opening period.
Mark Murnaghan’s men enjoyed an electric start to the second half and they gave their loyal supporters plenty to cheer about with four points on the trot.
Substitute Matthew Kelly opened the salvo with a fine score, Stephen Kearney added before Eoin Burke and Kearney again suggested something of a comeback in the air.
Conor Odlum made it 2-13 to 0-6 immediately afterwards. Hollywood needed goals but they just wouldn’t come, with PJ O’Keeffe missing a chance early in the second half that might have kick-started what would have been a seismic comeback in any man’s language.
Two Ross Davis points ended any hope of such a miracle and the Newtown attacker closed out the scoring following Hollywood minors from Stephen Kearney and full-back Harry Wilson for what was a huge victory for Newtown.
They survive in Senior thanks to this 2-16 to 0-8 victory and, going on this performance alone, Damien Gilligan’s men most definitely belong at the top table.
Hollywood will regroup and will approach the Keating Trophy clash with Baltinglass with their endless bravery and pride.
Scorers – Newtown: Ross Davis 0-9 (3f, 1 SL), Conor Odlum 1-2 (1f), Declan Doyle 1-0, Sean Gregory 0-2, Neil Martin 0-1, Shane Mooney 0-1, Sean Heffernan 0-1.
Hollywood: Stephen Kearney 0-3, Cian Tyrrell 0-1, Matthew Kelly 0-1, Eoin Burke 0-1, Harry Wilson 0-1, Thomas Burke 0-1 (f).
NEWTOWN: Thomas Maher: Robert Greennan, John O’Donoghue, Karl Carthy; Lee Turner, Shane Mooney, Neil Martin; Paul O’Riordan, Mark Fitzsimons; Sean Gregory, Sean Heffernan, Darragh Callan; Conor Odlum, Declan Doyle, Ross Davis. Subs: Con Callan, Cathal McNicholas, James Synnott.
HOLLYWOOD: Jamie Tutty; Seanie O’Keeffe, Harry Wilson, Shane Kelly; Conor Burke, Mikey Healy, Donncha Halpin; Cian Tyrrell, Rob Houlihan; Ryan Mulvey, Eoin Burke, Rob Kelly; Thomas Burke, Stephen Kearney, PJ O’Keeffe. Subs: Matthew Kelly, Harry Houlihan, Jack Cullen. REFEREE: John Keenan (Aughrim)