Hanover had a comfortable win in Killeshin on Sunday, a win which means Crettyard will have to wait at least another week to reclaim their title.
Hanover were on the front foot from the off and had already seen a Sean Kavanagh effort chalked off on 20 minutes before the returning Niall Swan headed home from a Mark Davis cross on 25 minutes. Daryl Hayden saw his effort rebound off the crossbar moments later and on the half hour it was 2-0 as Hanover’s pressure eventually told, Davis with a rare headed goal from Phil Neenan’s cross doubling the lead. Keane Nolan had Killeshin’s best chance of the half but fired just over before Hanover’s Cathal Coughlan crashed a 20 yarder off the crossbar on the stroke of half time.
The second half began with Harps on the offensive again but it was Killeshin and Shane Coakley that would strike next, Coakley scoring the goal of the game from 40 yards to reduce the arrears on the hour. Harps responded well and restored their two goal advantage 10 minutes later, substitute Graham Delaney was fouled in the penalty area and Eric Robinson netted the spot kick for 3-1. Evan Ruddy got his reward for a tireless display on the Hanover wing when he netted with the last kick of the game to finish off the scoring.
Best for Harps included Simon O’Shea, Niall Swan and Cathal Coughlan while best for the hosts were Joe Travers, Murty Williamson and Brian Lawlor
HERALD STRIKER DIVISION ONE
Crettyard United 4
Hanover Harps 1
A cracking team performance from Cretty saw them pick up maximum points at home.
Playing lovely attacking football United took a deserved lead on 14 minutes when a through ball from Philip Brennan was finished with aplomb by Cormac Murphy. This was to be the only goal of the first 45 minutes.
A towering header from John Graham put the home side 2-0 up in the early stages of the second half. Hanover were back in the contest on the hour when a cracking free kick from Popa Dowling found the Cretty net. Then as Hanover chased the game United punished them with two goals from Cormac Murphy to put them in the comfort zone. There was to be no response from the visitors as Cretty went on to a deserved victory.
Philip Brennan, Cormac Phelan and Cormac Murphy stood out for Cretty with James Ruth, Aaron Wynne and John Waters best for Hanover.
WHITE’S PHARMACY DIVISION
St. Joseph’s 1
Ballymurphy Celtic 8
The Bally boys closed in on league leaders St. Anne’s following this emphatic win in Tinryland.
Celtic took an early lead with a Jack Foley goal. Joey’s managed to respond to this early setback and got back on level terms with a great free kick from David Townsend on 17 minutes. However, Celtic were back ahead three minutes later with a neat finish from Thomas Doyle. Doyle put Celtic further ahead before half-time which came with the visitors 1-3 up.
Kevin Foley went on a scoring spree in the second half finding the Joey’s net on no less than four occasions to open up a mountain of a lead. To round off things Thomas Doyle completed his hat trick on 88 minutes with a delicate chip over the Saints keeper.
Tops for Celtic were Tom O’Neill, Kevin Foley and Thomas Doyle. For Joseph’s Conor Dooley, Gary Scully and David Townsend put in a good effort.
BURGER KING CARLOW DIVISION 3
New Oak Boys 5
Nurney Villa 0
The final score line somewhat flatters the winners as it was only in the last quarter that they killed off the Nurney challenge.
The home side were to get off to a tonic start when the Nurney goalie let a James Williamson tame shot through his hands and Danny Thompson fired home from close range. Villa with a strong breeze at their backs missed a few good chances to get back into the game with Adam Kenny and Colin Townsend twice missing good opportunities and the half ended 1-0 to New Oak.
With the elements at their backs the home side got on top in the third quarter and Kevin Coakley shot home after Declan Murphy pushed out a Danny Thompson shot after 56 minutes. The game was up on 70 minutes when Coakley put away another rebound. The home side now took control and John Nangle got in on the scoring before Kevin Coakley completed his hat trick with a fine header to complete a fine win.
Harry Hynes, Shane Byrne and Kevin Coakley impressed for New Oak. With Dan Slye, Ross Jacob and Anthony Hogan best for Nurney.
Premier Cup Round 1
New Oak Boys 2
Baltinglass Town 1 AET
A brace from Jamie Clarke, the second coming three minutes from the end of extra time saw New Oak edge Baltinglass to book a place in the quarter finals of the Premier Cup.
Strong winds made this a difficult game for both teams as the sides struggled to find their rhythm in a first half lacking in clear goal scoring chances. New Oak did create the best of the openings but none of Lee Walker, Conaill Dunne or Dean Kelly could break the deadlock as the teams went into half time scoreless.
Baltinglass were much improved on the restart and pinned their hosts back in their own half, the pressure eventually yielding the opening goal on 65 minutes, Dan O’Brien pouncing on a loose ball before neatly lobbing the ‘keeper to put Town in front. The hosts upped their game and were level eight minutes from time as Clarke picked up the ball in midfield, played a neat one-two with Walker before slotting the return to the net for 1-1 ensuring extra time was necessary. Jimmy White and Walker both had chances for The Boys as Dean Kelly also hit the post for New Oak but just as penalties looked on the cards Clarke struck again to win it. Walker was fouled on the edge of the area and Clarke did rest from 20 yards as his sweetly struck free kick found the net to see New Oak through and reward the efforts of Cathal Gaffney, David O’Shea and Dean Kelly.
Best for Baltinglass were Dan O’Brien, James Gahan and Peter Barry
DOUGLAS JEWELLERS CARLOW CUP
St Patrick’s Boys 2
Celtic Stars 0
St Pats booked their place in the semi finals of the Carlow Cup with this deserved, if hard earned, win over Division One pace setters Celtic Stars.
The visitors dominated the opening quarter as St Pats struggled to find their usual passing game and Celtic were unlucky not to be in front on 20 minutes when Owen Coleman cracked his effort off a post. This let off gave Pat’s the spur they needed and ten minutes later they were in front. A Jamie Moran throw put Michael Dobosz through on goal, Dobosz shrugging off the attentions of two defenders and finishing neatly to the bottom corner for 1-0. Dominic Byrne and Jamie Farrell both brought good saves out of the Stars ‘keeper as the half drew to a close but the hosts had to be content with just the one first half goal.
The second period began as the first one finished with the hosts on the front foot and the all-important second goal arrived ten minutes in, Conor Clack whipped in a corner and Mick Condron rose highest to head home. Thereafter it was all pressure from Celtic Stars but some solid defending and poor finishing ensured there would be no nervy finish for the hosts.
Best for St Pat’s included Josh Moore, Brian Maguire and Mick Condron while impressing for the visitors were Peter Ryan, Owen Coleman and Ray Murphy.
St. Anne’s FC 3
Crettyard United ‘A’ 6
Division Two league leaders St. Anne’s were well in this cup tie for 70 minutes, but the extra little bit of quality from Crettyard told against a tiring home side in the final quarter.
The Ballylinan side took a shock lead after 15 minutes when a cross shot from Brian McEvoy ended up in the top corner of the Cretty net. The response from the premier side was swift however and goals from Brendan Fox and Jason Kealy had them ahead by the 30th minute, a lead they held until half-time.
It was 1-3 soon after the second half started when Sean O’Shea and Craig Comerford linked up together to release Lee Salter who finished with aplomb. We then had a brave fight back from St. Anne’s and a neat finish from Andy McEvoy put them back in the contest. McEvoy then drew the sides level with another excellent finish on 66 minutes. United however remained resolute and composed and managed to gain the upper hand and a Jason Kealy strike from distance regained the lead for them. Then Craig Comerford was brought down in the box for Lee Salter to put away the spot kick. The scoring was completed when John Graham netted near the end.
Excellent for Cretty were Jason Enright, Jason Kealy and Lee Salter. For Anne’s Jack Hickey, Evan Philips and Andy McEvoy played well.
Vale Wanderers ‘A’ 0
New Oak Boys ‘B’ 0 AET
(Vale win 4-2 on penalties)
It took penalties to decide this Carlow Cup tie in Leighlinbridge.
The visitors were denied twice by Vale keeper Zak Yongram as he saved excellently from Mick Curran on 18 and 37 minutes. Kealan Brennan also failed with a good opening as Boys dominated the game. In a counter attack Trevor Nolan fired over when well placed as the half ended scoreless.
Danny Darcy came close to breaking the deadlock for Vale in the second half, but again Boys had the best chances, but Mick Curran twice was denied again by Yongram and Evan Dudley hit the upright after a defensive blunder, so the game went to extra time.
Neither side could create a winner in the extra period and it was the home side who proved the better from the penalty spot to advance.
Zak Yongram, Pat Meaney and Eoin Johnson were best for Vale. While it was a good team performance from New Oak.
O’Neill’s Women’s Carlow Cup
Hanover Harps 16
Kilree Celtic 1
A quick fire hat-trick from Lisa Tobin would set the tone for this Cup quarter final.
The goal of the game came on 20 minutes when Kristen Jaclitsch made a fine run to finish an excellent passing move from the tightest of angles. Nicole Dowling, Niamh Kelly, Steph Kehoe and Marie Hynes all got on the scoresheet by half-time.
Breede Behan was doing her best in the Kilree goal with a couple of excellent saves but the goals kept coming with Dowling completing her hat-trick, Tobin adding her fourth, Steph Kehoe’s second, two well taken goals from Sarah Babzer Keating and a cool penalty from Natasha Sheehan. Kilree never gave up and were rewarded with an excellent strike from Caitlin Doran and Mary Nolan would have the last say with an excellent finish at the death to reward the efforts of Marie Hynes, Tasha Sheehan, Melanie Walker and Kristen Jaclitsch. While Karen Nelson, Brede Behan and Caitlin Doran impressed for Kilree
Vale Wanderers 8
Nurney Villa 0
Vale Wanderers ladies entertained Nurney at home to see who would advance to the semi final of the Carlow ladies cup.
Nurney battled well for the majority of the game but some well put together passes from Vales defence through mid-field were too strong at times and before the first half was over saw the home team leading 3-0. Goals scored by Susan O’Leary and Phil Murphy.
The second half was much the same with Nurney battling hard with some great display of soccer by hazel Dowling and Jacinta Kearney. Vale defence stood strong with a great save being made by goalie Lisa Hawe which forced a missed chance of scoring from a fine strike by Melanie Byrne. Vale continued to push forward with some great goals by Susan O’Leary, Aoife Dunne and Nicole Hanley.
Best for Nurney was hazel Dowling, Jacinta Kearney and Orla Maher. It was a great overall performance from all the Vale players including Kate Ryan, Amanda Dermody
O’Neill’s LFA Women’s Junior Cup
Mullingar AFC 1
Crettyard Ladies 7
Crettyard had a long way to travel on what was a very windy day, however were comfortable winners in this Leinster game.
Mullingar took the lead in the first few minutes with a fine strike from their centre midfielder. However, Crettyard fought back with determination and goals from Niamh Power, Ceire Whelan and two from Aisling Behan made it 4-1 at the half.
The second half went in similar fashion with Aisling Behan getting her hat trick and Emer Delaney scoring two to seal the win for Crettyard.
Best for Crettyard were Patrice Whelan and Mary Clare Kelly. Best for Mullingar were Megan Brick and Orla Gavin.
SuperValu Under 18 Division
St Patrick’s Boys 9
St Fiacc’s FC 0
This was a top versus bottom contest and St Pat’s dominated from the start, taking a 3-0 lead inside of six minutes, through goals from Kelvin Corcoran and two from Jamie Farrell, then Luke Fitzpatrick made it 4-0, before Jamie Farrell completed his hat-trick, just before the interval and they took their 5-0 lead, into half-time.
Pat’s kept up the pressure in the second-half and St Fiacc’s just couldn’t get a look in and Pat’s scored another four unanswered goals through Jamie Farrell, who ended up with four and two from Craig Walker and one from Michael Dobosz, for a final score of 9-0 to St Pat’s.
Best for St Pat’s were Jamie Farrell, Josh Moore, Lee Dunne and Luke Fitzpatrick, whilst it was a hard-working effort from St Fiacc’s, who were simply outclassed by the Champions elect.
Nurney Villa AFC 3
Palatine Celtic 3
Third ranked Nurney Villa met third bottom Palatine Celtic, in very wet and stormy weather, which produced very poor, underfoot conditions and both sides deserve huge credit for producing such an entertaining game, particularly, in the first – half, when conditions were at their worst.
Pal have been rapidly improving of late and they can get above the teams immediately above them, in the table, as they have games in hand and could, in theory, even go above Nurney, who have been in decline, if they win their outstanding games, so it was all to play for and what a thriller it proved to be.
Pal had the favour of the wind first and they decided to play the long ball, up to their forwards, which produced a number of corners, but they couldn’t capitalise on any of them, but they came closest on 14 minutes when Nurney’s Jack Rowan headed off the line from a Paul Harland in swinging corner.
Just after that a Conor McDonald shot was cleared off the Nurney line and a Cian Fitzpatrick shot from long range just cleared the Nurney crossbar as Pal dominated, however, on 17 minutes and against the run of play, Nurney took the lead, when Brian Carroll won a ball in midfield and crossed it to Christian O’Riordan who was scorching up the left and he made no mistake, as he shot home for 1-0.
Despite the conditions worsening, it was Nurney who took control of the last 20 minutes of the half, with Sean Taylor causing mayhem for the Pal defence and he should have doubled Nurney’s lead on 23 minutes, but mis-hit his shot, but he made amends on 28 minutes, when Michael Murphy, put him clear and he hit a fine shot from distance for 2-0 and Nurney took this to the interval.
At half-time, both teams retired to the dressing rooms to try and dry off and thaw out a little and after more very heavy rain, the wind changed back in Pal’s favour once again and Pal had a number of early chances to score, but once again they couldn’t take them.
On 55 minutes Nurney’s Brian Carroll’s shot was saved by Colm Heneghan in Pal’s goal, but he failed to hold on to it and quick as a flash, Sean Taylor knocked it across the goal where Christian O’Riordan made sure by tapping it home for 3-0 and it looked as if Nurney had clinched all three points.
It was going to take something special for Pal to get back into the game and this arrived courtesy of Darragh Heneghan, who won a crunching tackle in mid-field, then played a neat one-two with Jack Finn, before unleashing a thirty yarder that nestled in the bottom left hand corner of the Nurney net for 3-1.
This was quickly followed by a Conor MacDonald strike to reduce the deficit to just one and a score of 3-2 and it was really game on now. Conor MacDonald had another shot parried over the bar by Declan Murphy in Nurney’s goal and the next Pal attack resulted in a nasty clash of heads and that resulted in a player from each side being withdrawn, for safety reasons and as they had both used their substitutes, so they were reduced to ten players each.
Pal’s search for the equaliser was rewarded when Darragh Fitzpatrick squeezed home a shot from close range on 85 minutes for 3-3 and a deserved point for each side in what was a fine contest.
Both Teams deserve praise for producing quality football in poor conditions, in a game played in a great spirit and no individual stood out, it was collective effort on both sides.