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gilligan in 'boro sights

BEGGSBORO.....................................2

CELBRIDGE TOWN..............................1

Beggsboro are still on the prowl for silverware after they punished Celbridge Town with some clincial finishing on Wednesday night to make the semi-finals of the Gilligan Cup.

A couple of second-half goals from Niall Mahon and Fintan Kennedy lit up a scrappy yet high-octane quarter-final and wreaked havoc on Town's hopes as the 'Boro kept up the chase for their first trophy in intermediate football.

The home side even had to come from behind as Town took the lead in the middle of an early flourish as Robbie Grendon netted with a powerful header after only six minutes.

Grendon's goal oozed class and was a real predator's effort. The striker made a dart to the front post, connected with Leigh Grendon's curling cross and then stooped to direct his header high into Karl Carey's net.

The 'Boro hustled their way back into the game after the early shock and Mahon went close on a couple of occasions, first curling inches wide and then forcing Adrian Sherry to parry onto the upright.

Mahon found his range four minutes into the second half. Stephen Parsons, who was drafted into the back four after an early defensive reshuffle following Dean Lawless' departure through injury, picked Mahon out with an in-swinging cross. The striker met the cross, looped a header over Sherry and watched it curl into the net at the last second.

There was still plenty of gas left in the two sides, but the tie swung on two key moments in the last dozen minutes. Town had the perfect chance to go back in front when they were awarded a penalty. Shay Fox took on the responsibility, but Carey judged right and produced a superb full-stretch save to keep out the fiercely struck spot kick.

Two minutes later and the home side were in front. A lightning counter attack had Town stretched. The ball came to the feet of Brian Voakes, who lifted his pass over the back line and into the path of Kennedy. The substitute still had plenty of work to do, but as the ball hopped, Kennedy stylishly lobbed it over Sherry and into the net.

Town rallied in the closing stages in a bid to force the game into extra-time, but it was the 'Boro that held out to set up a semi-final clash with Pegasus/St James Athletic.

BEGGSBORO: Karl Carey; Darren McDonnell, Anthony Costigan, Dean Lawless, Glen Scott, Karl Costello, Craig Dunne, Liam Byrne, Stephen Fitzpatrick, Niall Mahon, Stephen Parsons. Subs: Christopher Kelly (for Lawless 18mins), Fintan Kennedy (for Parsons 55), Brian Voakes (for Kelly 73mins), Lee Sheridan, Wayne McDonald, Stephen Costello, Ian Donnelly.

CELBRIDGE: Adrian Sherry; Paddy Mathews, Pat Mulvihill, Danny McKeown, Peter Blessing, Shane Harte, Leigh Grendon, Shay Fox, Danny Gorman, Robbie Grendon, Patrick King. Subs: Conor Caulfield (R. Grendon 70mins), Liam Conlon (for Mulvihill 70mins), Shane Moore, Karl Delaney, Willie Tallen.

Referee: Paddy McNeill.


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