McCrea saves the day with late stunner for Carnew
Carnew Emmets 2-08 Newtown 0-14
Brendan McCrea's mighty point close to the end of this SFL Division 1A clash between Carnew and Newtown earned the home side the draw that had looked very unlikely 13 minutes into the second half.
A skeletal Newtown crew made the long journey to the Wexford border and, thanks to a two goals, one in each half, the first from the penalty spot, had amassed a healthy 2-08 to 0-05 lead at the midway point in that second period.
Along the way they had lost midfielder Mark Fitzsimons to injury only to have to reintroduce him in goals at half-time to allow Kenneth Turner move outfield. And so it was a hefty amount of work the Magpies had ploughed through before the Carnew men started their recovery.
The performances of Neil Martin and Sean Gregory had a lot to do with the early Newtown dominance. Martin, at centre-half back, was impressive and Gregory had two of Newtown's first three scores with the very capable Ross Davis grabbing the third.
Carnew had opened the scoring through Conal McCrea who did well to shake off Stephen Davis and rampage in along the end line to fist over the bar.
A Seamus Osborne free and two whopper points from full-forward John Kavanagh completed Carnew's opening half tally with Kavanagh's battle with Shane Mooney being an interesting tussle to say the least.
But Newtown finished the first half the stronger. A Neil Martin point drew them level with Carnew and then a foul on Daniel Brady by Seamus Mulhall saw John Keenan point to the spot and Barry Davis fired low past Cormac Doyle to the back of the Carnew net. A Luke Martin point was followed by a Ross Davis converted free and the teams took shelter from the rain with the visitors leading by 1-06 to 0-04.
Luke Martin had replaced Mark Fitzsimons in the opening half but the injured Fitzsimons returned to the fray and took his place in goals for the second half. His injury left Shane Mooney with the job of the kick outs and he managed it with some aplomb over the next 30 minutes.
Newtown started the second half brightly. Karl Carthy swapped points with Conal McCrea and then Declan Doyle collected a sweetly weighted pass from Sean Heffernan and the midfielder lashed home to the roof of the Carnew net to lead by 2-08 to 0-05.
But then things changed. Seamus Osborne grabbed two points, one from a free and Brendan McCrea added another to leave two goals between the teams with 12 minutes remaining.
Tom Darcy sent in Michael Collins for Seamus Osborne around this time and then Brendan McCrea, John Kavanagh and Enda Donohue brought Carnew to within touching distance of Newtown at 2-08 to 0-11 with four of normal to go.
A John Kavanagh point was followed by a Conal McCrea effort and then Carnew came hunting for the equaliser. Padraig Doran ballooned one effort wide off his left before Brendan McCrea gathered about 30 yards from goal. He exchanged a one-two with Niall Osborne and then took on Karl Carthy. He got past the half-back but was fouled but as John Keenan sounded the whistle, McCrea fired over a screamer and the point stood and carnew had their share of the spoils.
It hadn't looked on the cards early in the second half but their doggedness and their determination got them something from a battle with a depleted but very capable Newtown outfit.
Scorers - Carnew: John Kavanagh 0-04, Brendan McCrea 0-03, Conal McCrea 0-03, Seamus Osborne 0-03 (2f), Enda Donohue 0-01.
Newtown: Ross Davis 0-03 (1f), Sean Gregory 0-02, Barry Davis 1-00, Declan Doyle 1-00, Neil Martin 0-01, Karl Carthy 0-01.
Carnew Emmets: Cormac Doyle; Ciaran Mulhall, John Walshe, Michael Rock; Willie Collins, Niall Osborne, Nick Skelton; Pádraig Doran, Justin House; Drew Brennan, Enda Donohue, Brendan McCrea; Seamus Osborne, John Kavanagh, Conal McCrea.
Newtown: Kenneth Turner; Glen Carthy, Shane Mooney, Stephen Davis; Karl Carthy, Neil Martin, Aaron Turner; Declan Doyle, Mark Fitzsimons; Ross Davis, Sean Heffernan, Sean Gregory; Daniel Brady, Cathal McNicholas, Barry Davis. Subs: Luke Martin for M Fitzsimons, Mark Fitzsimons for L Martin.
Referee: John Keenan.