Saturday 15 December 2018

Ivan's the man with dramatic last-gasp goal

Division 2 - Seneschalstown 2-15 Rathkenny 2-15

Sean Wall

A last-gasp goal from substitute Ivan Lenehan secured a share of the spoils for Rathkenny in this high-scoring encounter at Seneschalstown last Saturday evening.

The draw keeps Rathkenny firmly in the race for promotion and a quick return to the top tier following their relegation at the end of last season. They still, however, trail table-toppers and neighbours Syddan, with the sides set to clash in a round-eight tie.

Seneschalstown led by six points at one stage in the second half before their lead was wiped out. But they managed to open up a three-point advantage entering the closing stages and seemed set for the win until Lenehan struck with a goal in added time.

Lenehan, who was introduced as a sub five minutes into the second half, was making his first appearance since suffering a cruciate ligament injury almost 12 months ago.

Both sides were short a number of regulars, but there was an interesting midfield tussle between two former county stars, Joe Sheridan and Brian Meade. The sides enjoyed spells of dominance throughout, with the hosts finding the net late in the half to lead 1-8 to 0-9 at the break. That goal came from Cathal Finnegan who cut in from the wing before finishing to the net. Veteran full forward and Meath senior selector Donal Curtis proved a handful for the Seneschalstown defence throughout the opening half and ended with three points, all from play. The 45-year-old added another point in the second half.

Owen Elliott, Keith Curtis (frees) and Jack Gore all hit a brace of points for Rathkenny in the first half, while Robert Wogan (three), Dylan Keating and Cathal Finnegan (two each) and Mark Fox accounted for the Seneschalstown points in the opening 30 minutes.

Seneschalstown made the best possible start to the second half, with a goal from Keating following a delightful lay-off from Finnegan. And when Niall McCabe got in the scoring act with a point it left the Yellow Furze men leading 2-9 to 0-9. Rathkenny seemed in trouble at that stage, but they were back in contention by the end of the third quarter following four pointed frees from Keith Curtis. They eventually drew level before the home side regained the lead after Finnegan, Wogan and Joe Sheridan accounted for points.

Keith Timmons pounced for a Rathkenny goal on 50 minutes after an effort from Lenehan had rebounded off the crossbar.

Further scores from Niall Lyons, Sheridan and Wogan left Seneschalstown three clear entering added time, but proceedings took one final twist with that late effort from Lenehan to keep Rathkenny firmly in the promotion hunt.

Seneschalstown finished with 14 following the late dismissal of Joe Cowley.

SENESCHALSTOWN: David Gordon; Mark Fox 0-1, John Smith, Brian Maguire; Niall Lyons 0-1, Joe Cowley, Adam Carey; Niall Hickey, Joe Sheridan 0-2; Niall McCabe 0-1, Cathal Finnegan 1-3 (1f), Alan Mulvany; Dylan Keating 1-2, James Meade, Robert Wogan 0-5 (2f). Subs: Ryan O'Dowd for Mulvany, Ronan Conneely for Maguire, Sean Carey for Meade, Robert Ruddy for Lyons.

RATHKENNY: Colin Curtis; Joe Gore, Ross Gore, Niall Brannigan; Stephen Crosbie, Thomas McGuinness, Jack Thompson; Brian Meade, Christy Meade; Keith Timmons 1-0, Brian Lenehan, Jack Gore 0-3; Owen Elliott 0-2, Donal Curtis 0-4, Keith Curtis 0-6fs. Subs: Ivan Lenehan 1-0 for B Lenehan, Mark Byrne for Thompson, Evan Crosbie for Timmons.

REF: Joe Synnott (Donaghmore/Ash)

Drogheda Independent