Tuesday 16 October 2018

Skerries and Lusk fight for Under-21 silverware

Under-21 FC

Rory Kerr

Skerries Harps and Round Towers Lusk will contest next Saturday's Under-21 B decider after comfortably coming through their semi-finals at the weekend.

Skerries Harps breezed past Castleknock on a 2-12 to 0-6 scoreline, while Lusk were equally comprehensive winners - 3-11 to 1-6 over Clontarf. St Margarets were 2-9 to 0-8 winners over Naomh Mearnog in the C semi-final

In the Skerries Harps game early pressure from the home side saw Harps force a mistake off a kickout, with Stephen Smith able to capitalise with a well taken goal. Skerries tagged on two mores points before Castleknock eventually replied off a free.

It was, however, to be their last point of the half as Harps, despite losing Sean Rocks to a very contentious black card decision, drove on from there.

Indeed, Rock's dismissal proved something of a blessing in disguise, with Ciaran Murphy, having moved to midfield, recording three great scores from long distance. Minor player Killian McGinnis added Skerries' second goal to leave the home side comfortably ahead by 2-8 to 0-1 at the break.

And although playing into a strong breeze, Skerries began the second half with two early points, with Kevin Gilmore again dominant in the centre half position.

And while Castleknock managed to counter with three unanswered points after that, Skerries were never in danger of relinquishing their lead, with both Rob McKey and Tom Carroll coming off the bench to send over frees.

Round Towers Lusk, having registered an early goal in the second minute through Donal Clarke (they led 1-3 to 0-3 at half-time), put the game to bed in the last 20 minutes.

They hit two goals in quick succession through Kyle Connell, with a 40th-minute penalty, and Cillian Healy to move eight points clear with 10 minutes to go.

St Margarets, despite being reduced to 14 men early in the second half, still proved too strong for home side Naomh Mearnog in Torcaill.

Mearnog were at their best in defence where Conor Ryan, their standout back over the campaign, had another excellent game.

Only two points separated the sides at the break in a half which which saw Sean Hawkshaw register a number of good points before the Dublin minor full forward eventually retired with a recurring injury early in the second half.

And although playing against the breeze, St Margarets dug in deep, with the introduction of key substitutes giving them the impetus to drive on as Conor Hickey (1-7) and Darren Keogh grabbed the crucial goals.

Nonetheless, Mearnog never gave up, with their outstanding centre back Gavan Nangle doing his best to drive the team on in the closing stages.

Fingal Independent