Tuesday 13 November 2018

Skryne aim for third title

Banjo Sherlock's Meath Senior Football Championship Semi- Final

Skryne ........................... 0-14

Walterstown .................... 0-8

They failed to lift the Keegan Cup in either the seventies or the eighties but Skryne will be attempting to win their third senior title of the decade when they take on Dunshaughlin in the final on Sunday week, following this clear-cut semi-final win over neighbours Walterstown at Pairc Tailteann on Saturday last.

The Tara men probably had better balanced sides in those former years but they didn't have a Trevor Giles or John McDermott and it was this duo which propelled the Blues to another final with unexpected ease.

Skryne were up against a Walterstown side full of youth and exuberance but the Blacks proved a major disappointment, making a tame exit and on this display have a long way to go in their efforts to bring the Keegan Cup back to Garlow Cross in the near future.

Skryne played their trump card to perfection by placing Trevor Giles at left half-forward while Walterstown's intercounty star Paddy Reynolds seemed wasted in his roving role. It was a little surprising then that the Blacks selectors persisted with Karl Reynolds, who got a roasting from Giles when they might have better to switch the older Reynolds to defence in an effort to curb the effectiveness of the Skryne man.

Giles accounted for seven points of his side's tally, including three frees and was easily the games outstanding player. Skryne played with the breeze in the opening half and notched nine points in the opening 20 minutes. It seemed as if even referee Jimmy Henry began to feel sorry for the Blacks by awarding them a 23 rd minute penalty, a harsh decision, but a point was all Walterstown midfielder Charles McCarthy could manage from the resultant spot kick.

The winners eventually finished the half, ahead 0-9 to 0-2 with McCarthy again on target from another free. Indeed it is not too difficult to pinpoint the reasons for the Blacks downfall. They managed just a single point from play for the entire hour, from Christopher Reynolds four minutes into the second half. All of their remaining points came from the boot of McCarthy from placed balls.

However McCarthy was also guilty of a couple of crucial misses at the beginning of the final quarter, a period when Walterstown were threatening a comeback and were just four points in arrears.

Brian Smyth two, and Giles three, were the Skryne scorers in the opening ten minutes. Ciaran Murphy with two further points, Ken O' Connell and Giles from a free piled on the agony before Walterstown eventually broke the deadlock.

Walterstown had an excellent chance of a goal two minutes before the break when Paddy Woods broke through but the advancing Philip Kinsella blocked his effort.

Giles and McCarthy swapped points on the restart and after McCarthy converted three further frees the margin was down to just four points, Skryne ahead 0-10 to 0-6.

That was the closest they got though as the brilliant Giles stretched the Skryne lead in the closing stages. A much improved display from Skryne on this occasion with Ken Pentony, Gordon Geraghty and Martin Mulvaney impressive in defence, Paul O' Donnell give McDermott good support at midfield while in attack Ciaran Murphy, Brian Smyth and Ken O' Connell all did well alongside Giles.

Walterstown were a major disappointment, with only Gareth McGuinness, Conor McGrane, Joey Farrelly, Paddy Reynolds and place kicker McCarthy prominent.

Scorers: Skryne- Trevor Giles 0-7, Brian Smyth, Ciaran Murphy, Ken O' Connell 0-2 each, James Gibbons 0-1. Walterstown: Charles McCarthy 0-7, Christopher Reynolds 0-1.

Skryne: Philip Kinsella, Gordon Geraghty, Ken Pentony, Louis Pentony, Martin Mulvaney, Ronan Mulvaney, David Donnelly, Paul O' Donnell, John McDermott, Brian Smyth, Mick O' Dowd, Trevor Giles, Ciaran Murphy, Ken O' Connell, James Gibbons. Subs: Sean Lynch for Louis Pentony, Colin Lynch for O' Donnell.

Walterstown: Ronan Barry, Neil Reynolds, Gareth McGuinness, Ian Kearney, Karl Reynolds, Conor McGrane, Mark Farrelly, Charles McCarthy, Joey Farrelly, John McCarthy, Paddy Woods, Paul Browne, Paddy Reynolds, Killian Kennedy, Christopher Reynolds. Subs: Hugh Gribben for Mark Farrelly, Donal Kennedy for Browne. Referee: Jimmy Henry.