Monday 19 March 2018

Pulsating contest

Wicklow came into this game on the back of a heavy defeat to Kildare last week.

Wicklow came into this game on the back of a heavy defeat to Kildare last week.

Straight from the off this was a pulsating contest with the ball zipping from one end of the field to the other.

Kevin McDonald got the visitors off the mark with a pointed free in the second minute but this score was quickly cancelled out by the enterprising Bill Moorehouse who skipped through the Carlow defence and fired over from close range.

Darragh O'Neill and Moorehouse again swapped points before Carlow had two from Conor Foley and Andrew Kane. Again, Wicklow came forward with Christopher Moorehouse clearing his lines up to the hard running Andrew Kavanagh who sent Seanie Germaine clear on goal.

Carlow have keeper, Thomas Dowling, to thank for brilliantly saving Germaine's rasping shot when he parried the ball to safety but conceded a 65.

Enda Donohue sent the resultant placed ball high over the crossbar to leave the minimum between the sides.

Carlow hit a purple patch between the 15th and 21st minute. Darragh O'Neill with a goal and two points and Kevin McDonald with another point put the visitors six points ahead.

The Wicklow lads dug deep and began to chip away at the lead.

Time and again Tiernan Mellon proved a torment and his three points alongside another Donohue free kept Wicklow in touch. McDonald was also having an excellent day for Carlow from the placed ball and he popped over two late frees to leave the half time score Carlow 1-09 to Wicklow's 0-07

The second half lacked none of the pace of the first. Wicklow were fighting hard to get back to parity but no matter how they tried they could not make up for the goal they conceded in the 15th minute.

Three points from Donohue and one from Andrew Hughes did raise some hope but Carlow were able to keep their noses ahead with three points from McDonald and a Dean Grennan point.

The introduction of Aaron Kinsella had strengthened the Wicklow defense and his majestic catch and clearance set Andrew Hughes clear.

Skipping through the Carlow half back line, Hughes passed crisply to Bill Moorehouse who's shot scraped over instead of under the crossbar.

Once again it was McDonald who was on hand to cancel out the score.

Wicklow introduced George O'Brien for Moorehouse and he was instrumental in breaking the ball to Tiernan Mellon who sent an unstoppable shot to the roof of the Carlow net.

Time was not on Wicklow's side. Andrew Kane added another Carlow point before points from Mellon and Padraig Doyle left just one point between them but it was not to be. Two injury time points from James Ansbro and McDonald put paid to Wicklow's revival and secured the points for the Carlow lads.

Wicklow now face Antrim in their concluding match in the series when the northern lads visit Arklow next Saturday.

David Moran and his management team will be very pleased by the commitment and skill shown by this very young minor panel that will have no less than 26 of the players still Minor next year.

Wicklow People