Wednesday 29 March 2017

Quick-fire Mulvihill double puts Garrycastle back on glory trail

Garrycastle 2-13
Mattock Rangers 2-10
Leinster club SFC q/f

Last year's provincial runners-up Garrycastle have qualified for another semi-final following a hard-earned three-point win in Mullingar yesterday.

The home side were well on top in the early stages and were deservedly ahead by 0-5 to 0-1 at the end of the first quarter, with Westmeath star Dessie Dolan accounting for two of their five points from a pair of superbly judged '45's.

However, the game then turned on its head when Mattock Rangers struck for two goals in a minute. A classy finish after a lengthy solo run by Adrian Reid was followed by a fine shot to the roof of the net from Niall Sharkey, who had been well picked out by Christy Grimes.

These goals propelled the Louth champions to a two-point interval lead (2-4 to 0-8).

A well-taken point within 30 seconds of the resumption from Darren Brennan increased the visitors' advantage.

Remarkably, though, Garrycastle proceeded to replicate their opponents' first-half achievement with a brace of quick-fire goals in the 32nd and 33rd minutes. Firstly, Aidan Browne found Paddy Mulvihill, who finished with aplomb from close range. In their next attack, Browne linked up with Mulvihill again and he finished with ease.

Indeed, the same player was unlucky not to complete his hat-trick when his powerful shot struck the bar in the 36th minute, but Shane Mulvihill pointed from the rebound.

Garrycastle were three points up just past the midpoint of the second half when Mark Brennan was dismissed for the Wee County men, after picking up a second yellow card. However, David Reid still shot two terrific points for Mattock.

In the 56th minute, the winners were fortunate when Reid's fisted effort came back off the crossbar and Brennan was penalised for overcarrying when he collected the rebound close to goal.

However, the Lake County men hung on and they wrapped up victory deep into added-time when Shane Mulvihill pointed from 40 metres to set up a semi-final clash with Kilmacud Crokes on Sunday week.

Scorers -- Garrycastle: P Mulvihill 2-2, D Dolan 0-4 (0-2 '45', 0-2f), P Dillon (0-2f), S Mulvihill 0-2 each, J Dolan, A Browne, A Fox 0-1 each. Mattock Rangers: D Reid 0-4 (0-2f), A Reid, N Sharkey 1-0 each, C Grimes (0-1f), M Brennan, D Brennan 0-2 each.

Garrycastle -- C Mullin; J Dolan, J Gaffey, A Fox; M McCallon, K Henson, D Harte; J McAteer, A Browne; S Mulvihill, D Dolan, R McGowan; J Duignan, P Dillon, P Mulvihill. Subs: D O'Shaughnessy for Duignan (h-t), A Daly for Dillon (39), E Mulvihill for McAteer (53), P Rattigan for Fox (60).

Mattock Rangers -- M Englishby; P Bannon, D Brennan, M Sherlock; S Gilsenan, D Englishby, M McKeown; R Leneghan, C Grimes; A Reid, M Brennan, D Reid; D Brennan, R Brennan, N Sharkey. Subs: K Brennan for Leneghan (49).

Ref -- S Doyle (Wexford).

Irish Independent

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