Clanna Gael 0-13 Ballyboden St Enda’s 0-9
After finishing runners up in our qualifying group our minor B footballers had to travel to Clanna Gael for a quarter final. Our opposition had breezed through their group running up big scores in all three games but we travelled knowing that if we played to our potential we had every chance of winning the game. The morning started on an ominous note with not one, but two dreaded Sunday morning texts robbing us of two key lads. Thankfully we had excellent re-enforcements from the U16 ranks in Ciaran Duggan and Jimmy Meaney to supplement the panel on the day. (Thanks to the U16 management for the support).
We started against the wind on a bright and breezy morning in Sean Moore Park. Clanna Gael started confidently with the wind and scored two early points before we got on the board with an excellent Cian Hassett point. The first half developed into a story of Clanna Gael taking their points when they could and our missed goal chances – superb work from Cian Hassett resulted in another excellent point which could have easily found the net while Cian Kelly was denied by a fine save from the goal keeper. A further goal chance was denied by some poor refereeing.
We reached half time unlucky to be 0-9 to 0-4 down. Conor Casey chipping in with two excellent points before the half was over – not bad for a lad with only one working hamstring!
Given the wind advantage and our decent performance in the first half we turned around optimistic that the deficit could be overturned. We started brightly with an Oisin King point and another from Cian Hassett closing the gap to 3 early in the second half. While our excellent full back line of Tom White, Rian Power and Tom Culleton made sure that Seamus’s goal wasn’t threatened Clanna Gael continued to do just enough to pick off points as the half progressed. Our midfield pair of Sean Bury and Ciaran Duggan at midfield supported by the excellent David Gannon and Micheal Manning at half back made sure we continued to enjoy most of the possession but our composure in front of the posts deserted us as the game entered the critical phase. Two more Cian Hassett points (0-5 in total) and one from the hard working Eoghan Duignan were all we could manage in the final 15. Clanna Gael matching us during this period to run out 4 point winners on a 0-13 to 0-9 score line.
The short season resulted in a number of injuries which didn’t help our cause. We seemed to pick up broken bones as easily as scores over the course of the championship with David Monaghan (broken finger), Senan Dwyer (broken wrist) and Ronan McGowan(broken knuckles) all being key members of the panel ruled of the final game. A case of what might have been for this group – their dedication and effort since the start of the truncated season has been excellent. It has been a pleasure for the mentors this year, our only regret being the truncated nature of the year meant we couldn’t enjoy a full programme of games.
This is the end of minor football for 10 of the panel who will join the adult ranks next year. We wish them all the best and have no doubt that they will continue to represent the club well into the future.
Back Row: David Monahan, Senan Dwyer, Cian Kelly, Jimmy Meaney, Reed Barry, Cian Hassett, David Gannon, Ciaran Duggan, Rian Power, Seamus Boyle, Sean Bury, Ronan McGowan
Front Row: Charlie Brady, Tom White, Thomas Culleton, Micheal Manning, Oisin King, Edward Phelan, Eoghan Duignan, Conor Casey (missing from photo: Oran Dunne, Josh Ennis)