Wednesday 16 January 2019

O'Neill grabs a late winner

Enniscorthy Farms Systems JAFC Semi-finals: Adamstown 2-9 Our Lady's Island 1-11

Cathal Devereux of Our Lady’s Island under pressure from Mark Cowman (Adamstown)
Cathal Devereux of Our Lady’s Island under pressure from Mark Cowman (Adamstown)

Dave Devereux in Hollymount

A goal from Seánie O'Neill deep into injury time earned Adamstown a dramatic victory over a shell-shocked Our Lady's Island outfit in their Enniscorthy Farms Systems Junior 'A' football championship semi-final in Hollymount on Saturday.

There was 65 minutes on the clock when Shane Bradley picked out O'Neill with a quickly-taken free and the substitute made no mistake, blasting a shot to the roof of the net.

Our Lady's Island looked to be on their way to the final when points from Cathal Devereux and Darragh Sinnott put them two ahead with time running out, but they were hit with a late sucker-punch.

After the Wexford District side had got off to the perfect start with points from Devereux, Brian Moore and Fintan Mullins, Adamstown took control, scoring 1-7 without reply, and looked like they were going to saunter to a comfortable victory.

Frees from Alan Bradley and Ian Stafford either side of a superb Paddy Whitty effort from an acute angle drew them level, before Brendan Kehoe struck for a goal with 13 minutes on the clock.

Eric Bradley flicked a Whitty delivery into Kehoe and he stylishly finished past goalkeeper Josh Burke.

The goal was definitely coming as Adamstown had served several warnings prior to hitting the back of the net, with Mervyn Moloney, Ian White and Shane Bradley all fluffing chances.

After Shane Bradley had tagged on a point for the New Ross District men, Our Lady's Island missed a goal chance when Cathal Devereux and Darragh Sinnott both saw efforts blocked in a packed goalmouth, before the ball fell to Harry Corish, who shot wide from a tight angle.

Adamstown continued to turn the screw and two points from Brendan Kehoe and an Ian White free had them seven to the good by the 30th minute.

However, Cian Meyler hit 1-1 in first-half injury time to renew Island hopes.

First he stroked over a free, before pouncing on a pass from Cathal Devereux and finishing at the second attempt after his initial effort had been saved by Jason Whitty to get his side back within striking distance (1-7 to 1-4).

That purple patch continued after the interval with Meyler contributing another score, before Harry Corish twice split the posts to draw them level.

Mark Cowman and Cathal Devereux then exchanged points before Alan Bradley edged Adamstown back in front in the 50th minute with a well-struck free off the ground.

Our Lady's Island had the opportunity to get themselves in the box seat when Devereux went on a rampaging run at the heart of the Adamstown defence and was brought down for a penalty.

There was a four-minute delay before Harry Corish took the spot-kick as referee Kevin Carty had a bit of sorting out to do, with Adamstown's Paddy Whitty being shown a red card and Mark Cowman getting a black card.

The wait did Corish no favours and Jason Whitty got across to make the save, although Cathal Devereux did manage to pick up the pieces and fire over the bar to draw Our Lady's Island level.

Fintan Mullins fisted over to nose them in front with 64 minutes on the clock, and when Darragh Sinnott followed suit seconds later they looked to have it in the bag.

However, there was a sting in the tail as John French was fouled as he sent a delivery into the danger zone.

Shane Bradley took the free in a flash from where the ball landed and Seánie O'Neill powered a shot to the net to win it for Adamstown.

The Our Lady's Island contingent were clearly unhappy that the free was allowed to be taken quickly, as they paid the ultimate penalty for switching off for a split second.

Adamstown: Jason Whitty; James O'Shea, John Whelan, Michael Dunleavy; John French (capt.), James Delaney, Tomás French; Alan Bradley (0-2 frees), Mark Cowman (0-1); Shane Bradley (0-1), Eric Bradley, Mervyn Moloney; Ian White (0-2 frees), Paddy Whitty (0-1), Brendan Kehoe (1-2). Subs. - Shane White for T. French, inj. (40), Seánie O'Neill (1-0) for E. Bradley (58), Michael Curtis for Cowman, black card (59).

Our Lady's Island: Josh Burke; Brian Moore (0-1), Eoin Kinsella (capt.), Davy Corish; Damien O'Donovan, Noel Dempsey, Quinn Saunders; Cathal Devereux (0-3), Cian Meyler (1-2, 0-1 free); Darragh Sinnott (0-1), Nicky Keane, David Pettit; Dean Corish, Fintan Mullins (0-2), Harry Corish (0-2, 1 free).

Referee: Kevin Carty (Sarsfields).

New Ross Standard