Sunday 15 September 2019

Carbury on track to defend Champions Cup title

Carbury FC 1 Westport United 0

Gerry Brennan gets his header away. Pic: Carl Brennan
Gerry Brennan gets his header away. Pic: Carl Brennan

Jessica Farry

Carbury FC are on track to defend their Summa Sports Champions Cup title after seeing off Westport United in the semi-final at Sean Fallon Park on Sunday morning.

Gary Finan scored the only goal of the game to see the champions through to the final once again.

Carbury, the defending champions after winning the first ever Summa Sports Champions Cup final last year, also beat Westport at the same stage in 2018.

The hosts had the best chances of the first half, although it was Westport who were first to threaten.

Philip Keegan's effort was saved bv Stephen Heraghty in the Carbury net, but the linesman's flag had been raised, before Jack Murphy's free-kick was dropped by Heraghty, before being eventually cleared by the Carbury rearguard.

The home side should have went ahead after 14 minutes, but Gary Armstrong's cross from the left was too fast for Finan to get a touch to it.

Murphy sent a second free-kick over the Carbury post before the Sligo side took control of proceedings.

Gareth Kelly broke free, playing in the onrushing Niall Brennan. The Ballymote man spotted Finan yards from goal, but his attempt was just wide of the post.

Armstrong's corner seconds later was nodded just millimetres over by Ryan McManus.

A perfect through ball from Colm Jinks came to Niall Brennan who found Finan once again in front of goal, but the ball was slightly behind the Carbury captain and he couldn't connect.

Kelly headed an Aaron Murren corner into the hands of Gary Cunningham, before a goal-line clearance from Ryan McManus kept an Eoin Conway shot out.

Murren was called into action after the hour mark when Peter Corcoran's effort was saved by Heraghty, with the follow up cleared by Murren who scored the winner in last year's Summa Sports Champions Cup final against Athenry.

McManus headed an Armstrong corner wide once again, before Carbury did eventually take the lead.

A threatening free kick from Murren sailed over the Westport defence, with Finan leaping highest to meet it, nodding past Cunningham to make it 1-0 to the hosts.

Westport, who currently occupy second place in the Elvery's Sports Super League, knew they had it all to do. Conway's free was wel saved by Heraghty in the Carbury nets,

The Mayo men looked to have no response to the Carbury goal, and they felt they should have had a penalty in the 94th minute when Aaron Cannon went down in the box, but referee Paul Kilcoyne waved play on, although play had to be stopped as a result of the melee that followed with Westport incensed at the lack of a penalty.

Carbury will find out their final opponents next week, with Ballinasloe Town taking on Ballina Town in the other semi-final.

Carbury: Stephen Heraghty, Ryan Norris, Colm Jinks, Ryan McManus, Aaron Murren, Gerry Brennan, Hafeez Sholola Ross McLoughlin, 79), Niall Brennan, Gary Armstrong, Gary Finan (David Adams, 90), Gareth Kelly.

Westport United: Gary Cunningham, Cillian McGlade, Mark McDonagh, Joe Lawless, Jonny Smith, Caoimhin O'Toole (Tim Campion, 76), Peter Corcoran, Jack Murphy, Eoin Conway, Darren Browne (Aaron Cannon, 10), Philip Keegan.

Referee: Paul Kilcoyne.

Sligo Champion