Cronan plunders a last-gasp winner for Rock Celtic
U-15 Premier: Shamrocks 3 Rock Celtic 4
Dylan Cronan snatched a last gasp victory for Rock after the home side twice came from behind and looked to have earned a draw after cancelling out a two goal deficit with four minutes left at Fatima on Saturday.
This under-15 tussle caught fire after a dull enough first-half in which the only real excitement was crammed into the closing five minutes when the sides exchanged a goal apiece.
Shamrocks played with the aid of a strong cross wind, but made just one real opening which dangerman James O'Connor couldn't convert as he tried to turn in Kaylem Casey's cross beyond the far post. The striker after his hat-trick the previous week had a quiet enough game, but made what looked a priceless contribution when his darting run down the side of the Rock defence on the right and a pinpoint cross to the far post set up Alex Tegella to tie up the scoring at 3-3.
He also won the penalty before the interval that Tegella curled inside the post to almost straight away equalise after Mark Leavy put Rock ahead on the half hour mark.
Rock scored twice inside four minutes in the first ten minutes of the second-half to open a 3-1 lead.
A long curling free-kick by Leavy from the left touchline provided Niall Brennan with a tap-in in front of the goal line.
Then Gartlan squeezed the loose ball inside the post after Shamrocks' goalkeeper Sean Bowne at full stretch pushed away Niall Brennan's low drive from the edge of the box .
Within a minute Jamie Joyce prodded the loose ball home in a crowded goalmouth at the other end following a corner -kick to cut the leeway to the minimum.
Straight afterwards John Hodgers shot into the Rock side netting, but Rock looked comfortable and struck the woodwork twice, which, had either effort gone in would have wrapped up the points.
Leavy struck a glorious free-kick from outside the 18 yard line that bounced down off the underside of the crossbar and it was debatable whether it crossed the goalline.
Then Gartlan , all alone in the box, headed Barra Duffy's cross against the post with the exposed home goalkeeper rooted to the spot.
That set the stage for the grandstand finish, with Tegella notching his second goal of the match to make it level pegging only for Cronan to fire a loose headed clearance inside the home box high into the corner of the net from a tight angle. There was barely time to re-start when the referee blew the final whistle.
Shamrocks: Sean Brown, Vincent Adejobi, Ben Gorman, Jake Mackin, Gareth O'Hare, John Hodgers, Kaylem Casey, James O'Connor, Alex Tegella, Sean Connolly, Stephen Myles, Jamie Joyce.
Rock: Conor Maddy, Cian Sheridan, Jai Akhal, Darragh O'Grady, Nathan Todd, Dillon Simpson, Barra Duffy, Joey O'Brien, Jesse Cumiskey, Niall Leer, Evan Durnin, Niall Brennan, Mark Leavy, Sean Gartlan, Benji Dada, Dylan Cronan.