Spirited Showing Earns Share of the Spoils

LMFM Minor Football League Division 1 Round 3

Seneschalstown 2-8 Skryne 1-11

Seneschalstown Minors battled back to earn a hard fought point against Skryne on Tuesday evening at Fr. Tully Park in the latest round of the Minor Football League. Trailing by five points early in the second half, the lads pulled themselves back into the game and even went ahead in injury-time before being pegged back by a late Skryne pointed free.

The visitors to Fr. Tully Park opened the scoring for the hour with a point from play in the 6th minute, while wing-back Séimí Byrne got the ball rolling for Seneschalstown when he slotted between the posts after picking up a loose ball in the Skryne defence. Skryne got their noses in front again shortly after with another point to leave themselves ahead at the first water break. In the first play after the game resumed a Seneschalstown player was deemed to have cynically dragged down a Skryne attacker in the large square, and the referee awarded a penalty.

Ryan Finnegan was deputising in goal tonight and made himself big for the penalty getting a strong left hand to the ball to prevent it from crossing the line. The ball was cleared to safety but Skryne worked the ball back in to clip over another point. Seneschalstown were able to keep themselves in the game despite the temporary numerical disadvantage, and were level by the 20th minute. Firstly, Robbie Finnegan converted a long range free off the ground and then Kyle Hosie found himself in space close to the end line and popped the ball over the bar, after making a smart run to create the opportunity for himself. With the momentum in their favour during this period, Finnegan added another free to put Seneschalstown in front for the first time, the free being made a relatively simple task after the referee advanced it by 13 metres for dissent by a Skryne defender.

However, the away side finished the half stronger by adding two points to go into the interval ahead by a point. Seneschalstown also faced into the second half with only 14 players on the field.

In the early stages of the second half, the mountain facing the hosts became bigger as Skryne got in for a quickfire 1-01 to leave the score 1-06 to 0-04. This Seneschalstown side though, as suggested in their Round 1 game against St. Pat’s, were not going to lie down and let themselves be beaten. Éamon Finnegan started the comeback with a pointed free from the right hand side following a foul on his namesake Robbie. Two minutes later, Seneschalstown were to receive a timely boost when Cian Rooney found the bottom corner of the goal after what can only be described as a terrific team move. Éamon Finnegan won the ball in the corner of his own defence and played a long ball out to Darren O’Brien, O’Brien himself then found Kyle Hosie with another kick pass. Rooney was coming thorough the Skryne defence at pace and Hosie had the vision to lay the ball off perfectly to the goalscorer who blasted low to the bottom left hand corner of the net. Seneschalstown would have been hoping to kick on from this but Skryne were the ones to respond best from the goal with two points from play. Finding themselves three points in arrears again, Robbie Finnegan pointed a long range free prior to the water break to leave two points in it.

After the water break, frees were swapped in the 49th and 51st minute, this time Robbie Finnegan scoring a free when Éamon Finnegan was fouled while going down to pick up the ball.

No scores were to follow for the next eight minutes, and to Seneschalstown’s concern it was Skryne who broke the scoring duck with a point from a free. Seneschalstown were now a goal behind again and needed to find something fast. When the home side were awarded a free in the middle of the field, Seneschalstown positioned some of their bigger players in around the Skryne goalmouth. Robbie Finnegan dropped a high ball into the danger area and after a scramble and one or two fumbles the ball fell to Sam Kirwan who pulled on the ball first time and unmercifully buried it into the back of the Skryne net to level the game up in the first minute of injury-time. The action was not to end there however, as in the next attack Robbie Finnegan received a pass on the clubhouse side of the field. Finnegan shrugged off the challenge of his direct opponent and off the outside of his right boot kicked an absolutely superb point to edge his side in front for what looked like an excellent victory.

However, there was to be one last sting from Skryne when the referee spotted a foul in the Seneschalstown defence and their left-half back put the ball between the posts to earn a share of the spoils. In the end, a draw was probably a fair reflection of a game where Skryne had their noses in front for most of the hour, but Seneschalstown managed to keep themselves within a few points right up to the very end, and nearly take victory themselves. Seneschalstown will be hoping to build on their first point of the campaign when they travel to play Donaghmore/Ashbourne next Tuesday.

Seneschalstown: Ryan Finnegan, Josh Keating, Danny Waters, Cormac Carolan, Conor Rooney, Ben Lynagh, Séimí Byrne (0-01), Darren O’Brien, Cian Rooney (1-00), Éamon Finnegan(0-01, 1f), Robbie Finnegan (0-05, 4f), Sam Kirwan (1-00), Tommy Walsh, Joe Norris, Kyle Hosie (0-01).

Subs Used: James Wyse, Cian Commons, Liam Dillon

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