Monday 17 December 2018

Michaels just edge out hard-working Macroom despite Kiely penalty

County PIFC Round 1: St Michaels 0-12 Macroom 1-8

The Blackrock side St Michaels always appeared to have the ability to overcome Macroom in the premier intermediate football first round championship encounter but in the end they were happy to be ahead by the narrowest of margins.

The winners were last season's finalists when they suffered defeat to Mallow by a one point margin so they are clearly one of the fancied sides in this year's competition. St Michaels certainly looked the part in last Sunday's encounter which was contested at Ovens when they confidently raced into a two points lead.

Their impressive centre half forward Eric Hegarty was the scorer of both of these minors and they appeared likely to move further ahead as they were combining well. A long range point from Macroom's long serving stalwart Fintan Goold was a boost to the mid-Cork side but St Michaels generally had the edge.

They were not flattered to lead 0-7 to 0-3 at the short whistle time, as Macroom secured their two additional scores from frees converted by David Goold while three players contributed to the improvement in St Michaels fortunes.

Liam O Sullivan was on target twice from play, Tadg Deasy had similar scoring success and Keith Hegarty made it minor number seven. Macroom managed to produce their best period in the two minutes before the interval however.

A well placed delivery by David Horgan put Tony Dineen in a goal scoring position. Michael's effort to foil a major led to Daniel Meany receiving a black card and Macroom being awarded a penalty.

Seán Kiely made no mistake from same and a subsequent Fintan Goold point from a free meant that the sides retired all square. Macroom could now feel exceptionally happy with their situation and one wondered if Michaels would regain the initiative when the action resumed.

The latter did have an opportunity of moving ahead following the restart when an attempt by Macroom to initiate a movement from a side-line kick went astray. Liam O'Sullivan was put in a scoring position for Michael's as a consequence, but his powerful drive for goal struck the upright.

Paul Cronin who had a good second period kicked a point in the thirty third minute however to put his side ahead. Macroom then appeared to suffer a huge set-back when Gerard Angland saw red so it appeared likely that Michael's would push on.

Macroom had other ideas however and they were back on level terms when Fintan Goold confidently sent the football between the uprights from a '45 in the 36th minute. Goold was now a major figure as Macroom rose their game.

The mid-Cork side took the lead when Andrew Hegarty scored from long range and Michael's had reason to be worried when substitute Pa Lucey raised a white flag in the 49th minute.

Macroom now enjoyed a two point advantage, but it is to Michael's credit that they were equal to the challenge. Paul Cronin kicked a point to reduce the arrears to the minimum and Tadg Deasy confidently converted a free in the 52nd minute to tie the scores.

Two good movements by the winners gave them shots at goal but an effort by Liam O'Sullivan was well saved by Brendan O'Connell the Macroom cúl baire, and a subsequent effort by Tadg Deasy was placed wide of O'Connell, but it was also slightly wide of the upright.

The contest continued to stay delicately poised but St Michaels performed better and minors from Keith Hegarty and Paul Cronin had them on the road to victory as the contest entered the time added on period.

Fintan Goold got a point back for Macroom, but there was no time for an equaliser. They must now prepare themselves for the challenge of an encounter between themselves and the losers of the forthcoming game between fellow Muskerry sides Béal Athan Ghaorthaidh and Éire Óg.

St Michaels are happy with their victory and they will be difficult opponents for whoever they meet in their next outing of the competition.

Scorers - St Michaels: P Cronin (0-3), T Deasy (0-3, 0-1 free), E Hegarty, K Hegarty and L O Sullivan (0-2 each). Macroom: F Goold (0-4, 0-1 free, 0-1 45), S Kiely (1-0 penalty), D Goold (0-2 frees), A Hegarty and P Lucey (0-1 each)

St Michaels: Cian Denn, Luke Carroll, Owen O'Sullivan, Tom Linehan, Daniel Meaney, Alan O'Callaghan, Richard Dineen, Andrew Murphy, Eoin Hickey, Keith Hegarty, Eric Hegarty, Paul Cronin, Tadg Deasy, Domhnall Cremin, Liam O Sullivan Subs: Conor Kilooyne for Meany (black card 30th minute), Eoghan Buckley for Liam O Sullivan (48th minute), Mark Drummond for Owen O Sullivan (56th minute injured)

Macroom: Brendan O'Connell, James O'Connor, Paul O'Farrell, Martin O'Donnell, Michael Cronin, Sean Kiely, David Cotter, Fintan Goold, David Goold, Gerard Angland, Tony Dineen, Mark Corrigan, John Murphy, Andrew Hegarty. David Horgan Subs: Ethan O Gorman for Corrigan (25th minute injured), Rory Buckley for Cotter (28th minute), Alan Quinn for Murphy (35th minute injured), Pa Lucey for Dineen (47th minute), Don Creedon for O'Connor (51st minute black card).

Referee: M Collins (Clonakilty).