Result: 2 16 to 0 18
Injury-time rasper seals the deal for Boden – The Long Fella Reports from Parnell Park
A last gasp strike from Boden’s Aiden Mellett that had the Vincent’s net dancing was the crucial score that now sends Ballyboden into the Senior Hurling final in two weeks time (save the day). The Marino men had been camped on the Boden twenty for more time than their supporters felt comfortable with. Indeed Vincents had a goal chance even when the clock turned red….but they were happy to point the close-in free in the hope that they would get another chance to send the joust to additional time. The next attack fell to Boden, and forty minute introduction Conor McCormack offered Mellett a ‘peppercorn’ disguised pass to send him goalbound where he flashed his shot past Vincent’s hapless goalman Dara de Poire.
On exit from Parnell there was much discourse among Boden supporters as to who may have been their side’s MVP. Mellett came in for mention as did Shane Durkin, but arguably the bulk of the ‘support’ was for second half introduction David O’Connor. Boden supporters watched in almost silent concern for the opening half as St. Vincent’s created some fine chances, particularly through the trickery of ‘point of the attack’ man Rian McBride. His three high quality points matched Boden’s entire point contribution from play for the half. However Boden’s more threatening trait……that of goal creation was to provide the most crucial score of the half. Conal Keaney worked hard to create the space for a goalbound shot that de Poire got his camán to. In failing to control the sliotar he offered the goal opportunity to Mellett and Paul Doherty….the latter who was credited with the score.
Doherty was also credited with a high quality dipping point from the stand whitewash that kept his side in the ascendancy heading for half time. Niall McMorrow grew into the game with some good interpassing and when the opportunities came he shot for points, a couple which he achieved. St. Vincents had their ‘go-to’ men also. John Hetherton playing around the forty bagged a fine point off his left, and his free-taking matched Boden’s Paul Ryan in quality.
Boden fielded for the second half with O’Connor taking up duties alongside Luke Corcoran in rearguard. Vincent’s Rian McBride now found the going more difficult and the half developed a different quality to the opening thirty. Space dried up in the scoring zones and this opened up the opportunity for O’Connor to win primary possession as well as mop up the loose ball that was proving a menace to the Boden goal. Perhaps his ‘previous lives’ as a corner forward and a mid-field creator stood him in good stead as he provided some good cross-field balls for his half forward colleagues. One of these diagonal balls fell to Keaney close to the terrace sideline. His clever offload to Mellett was enough to see the posts being split and open a three point lead with the clock ticking down. Vinnies kept plugging away and were rewarded with two scored frees before Mellett’s goal opened the door for Boden to close the game out.
Some late solid defensive work from Boden kept the gap to winning levels and the game finished with Vincent’s pressing for the day-saving scores which they needed.
Overall this was a strange game in many ways. The opening half was arguably dominated by St. Vincents. On turn-around the game turned Boden’s way with perhaps the ‘lesser’ names on the team-sheet showing best. As well as Mellett and O’Connor, Boden’s finishing mid-field of McMorrow and Durkin performed well. But Boden also got the most from David Curtin who provided some good assists which came to scores. Late on Niall Ryan showed his fitness to out-run the Vincent’s defence and create a few scored frees from his cousin Paul. Indeed the latter’s second half performance created continuity for the Boden attack with a few ‘flat’ passes to colleagues in open country.
Boden lined out with Gary Maguire, Dean Curran, Luke Corcoran, James Madden, Shane Durkin, Simon Lambert, David Curtin, Niall McMorrow, Niall Ryan, Paul Doherty, Paul Ryan, Conal Keaney, Aiden Mellett, David O’Connor, Conor McCormack, Conor Dooley, Stephen O’Connor.