Boden book place in the Dublin Senior A Hurling Quarter Finals
Ballyboden 1 25 Faughs 0 14
Big Fella Reports from Parnell Park
“The big fella done well, he did so”, was a tendered comment from a somewhat disappointed Faughs supporter after the final whistle at Parnell Park on Saturday evening. In the follow-up conversation we never actually had it confirmed that he was referring to Boden’s Conal Keaney, but almost certainly he was. In a game where his influence was required in both attack and defence, Keaney showed that his hunger for championship action has not diminished with the passing of the years. Mind you, he had competition for the title of MVP of the game. Boden pair Niall McMorrow and mid-fielder Seanie McDonnell also delivered top class performances in a game where Boden always looked destined to prevail and remain unbeaten in the group championship stage.
The first quarter opened in a frenzy of action with no clear pattern of play, that is until McMorrow found McDonnell in a nice pocket allowing him space to score his first of three on the night. By this stage it was clear that Boden were getting the better of Faughs in the crowded middle third and the influence of McDonnell and Aiden Mellett became apparent. The game’s opening points were for Faughs from free-taker Carl O’Mahony and the youthful James O’Brien. Keaney levelled matters, firstly from 90 metres and also when Stephen O’Connor found him with a measured pass. O’Mahony and Conor Dooley exchanged points before Boden’s James Roche found Niall Ryan to put his side into a lead that they never lost. McDonnell benefited from a McMorrow pass to extend the lead only to see Faughs Liam Mostyn narrow the gap to a point again. The half ended in some excitement when Boden had the ball in the net only for the referee to call it back for a technical foul, and Faughs had an open goal only to see the shot rebound off the furniture.
On sixteen minutes Mellett found McMorrow for a quality point before Ryan became provider on the double for Dooley and McMorrow. McDonnell ended a five pass movement for a quality point. Following on, Boden’s Rob Leddy sent his pass directly to Keaney and he showed his best with a smasher of a point. Faughs only had O’Mahony to thank for second-quarter scores, a brace from placed balls. Score at 11 to 6.
The second half opened with Faughs points from O’Mahony (f) and a super effort from Peter Shaw. Dooley kept the score-board ticking over with free and immediately assisted for McMorrow to show his class once again. O’Brien responded immediately for Faughs with one of the best scores of the game. Keaney received from Mellett to add another to the Boden tally and was followed by Faughs Niall Fitzgibbon with a superb effort. The game now began to “run-away” from Faughs when McMorrow laid on Keaney and Simon Lambert for superb points, Dean Curran added further pain to the Faughs cause by catching spectacularly to lay on the score for Dooley, Mellett finished the half with a brace of quality scores. 19 to 10.
The final quarter opened with a Faughs brace of points from Ciaran Brennan before the only goal of the game in Boden’s favour. Introduction Kevin Desmond sent his pass fully sixty metres to the grasp of McMorrow only for the Faughs goalman to bring him to ground. Dooley sent a cannon-like shot to the net, perhaps unseen by the Faughs goalman Eddie Hogan. Another Boden introduction John Maguire added his name to the score-card only to have his addition cancelled out by Faughs Emmett McKenna. The last three scores came from Boden through Ryan, Conor McKeon and Dooley.
Boden are now on top of the group with full points and a generous score difference with Scoil Ui Connaill as their final group game in two weeks time. Malachy Travers and his selectors will be reasonably happy with how the side performed but will be conscious that scoring will be more challenging in knock-out games down the line. They will also hope to be able to use additional players from a lengthy injured list which includes Dublin’s James Madden.
Squad; Finn McGarry, Stephen O’Connor, Luke Corcoran, Rob Leddy, Dean Curran, Simon Lambert, James Roche, Sean McDonnell, Aiden Mellett, Niall Ryan, Pearse Christie, Conor Dooley,Conal Keaney, Niall McMorrow, Shane Kennedy, Paddy Dunleavy, Conor McKeon, Kevin Desmond, John Maguire, Conor O’Donoghue, Paul Ryan, Luke McDwyer Shane Durkin, James Madden, David O’Connor.