Dutton doubles up
Thomas Scott Cup: Greystones United 0 St Anthony's 4
Influential midfielder Lee Dutton grabbed a brace of goals as St Anthony's sealed a semi-final place in the Thomas Scott Cup at Archfield, on Sunday morning.
The hard-working Dutton found the net twice in the first half, and striker Darren Collopy also got his name on the scoresheet to help the visiting side to a 3-0 lead at the half-time break.
And adventurous right-back Charlie Maguire put the icing on the cake for Wes Dempsey's side and ensured that there was no way back for Greystones when he added a fourth goal in the second half.
Playing with the advantage of the slope and the wind in the opening half, St Anthony's looked the more creative and dangerous side in the early exchanges, and only eight minutes had elapsed on the clock when Greystones found themselves a goal down.
Unfortunately for the home side, their goalkeeper Brian Kennedy misjudged a through ball from midfielder Larry Kenna, and Collopy, watched by his young son, took full advantage to steer the ball to the empty net.
Striker Anto Fermoyle occasionally looked menacing for Greystones, but he lacked significant support, and on 27 minutes St Anthony's stretched their lead when Dutton took advantage of an excellent through ball from Collopy.
Goalkeeper Kennedy parried Dutton's first shot, but the midfielder followed up to strike the rebound to the net.
And five minutes before half-time, Dutton added his second goal, this time jumping highest to head a right wing corner from Kyle O'Reilly past Kennedy.
On the restart, the home side marginally upped the level of their performance, and after four minutes midfielder Mukoro Gbereubie was just narrowly wide with a fine long-range effort, and shortly afterwards the same player had another excellent attempt tipped over the bar by St Anthony's goalkeeper Rob McNamee.
But just before that save, St Anthony's striker Patrick Woods was unlucky to see a low shot crash off the right post and go wide.
However, there was to be no denying the visiting side on 64 minutes when Maguire's upfield foray was rewarded when he took full advantage of an error by goalkeeper Kennedy to shoot his side's fourth goal and his second of this season.
"I thought that the 'keeper was going to take me down for a penalty, but thankfully he didn't," said a delighted Maguire afterwards.
In an after-match comment, St Anthony's manager, Wes Dempsey said: "I was very pleased with the performance today. We got off to a good start with the early goal, and we gave them very little time on the ball all over the park.
"Our midfield was very strong, and in particular Lee Dutton put in a very good performance, working very hard as well as scoring two goals and he was probably the man-of-the-match.
But all round, in defence, in midfield and up front, we were very strong.
"Obviously we were happy to be 3-0 up at half-time, but at the same time we knew that we had the advantage of the slope and the wind in the first half..
"We knew that the first 10 minutes of the second half was going to be crucial for us. So we just had to be calm and composed and perform as well as we had done in the first half.
"And thankfully that approach worked out very well for us, and it was great that we put the game to bed with our fourth goal.
"Generally we confined them to long-range shooting from which there was no real danger to our goal.
"And it's a tribute to our all-round play and to the excellent performance of our defence that we never found ourselves in one-on-one situations in the second half.
"Obviously we're delighted to be in the semi-finals of the competition, and it would be great if we went all the way.
"And it's additionally satisfying that we are doing so well, as the team had folded up half-way through last season for a variety of reasons, and so we have a number of new players in with us this season along with the lads who were there last season."
Greystones boss Martin McDevitt said: "We got off to a bad start against the wind and the slope in the first half, and it also didn't help that we were missing three or four players.
"The second half was better for us, but we had a very young and inexperienced team out there today with three 18-year-olds.
"However, I thought that we ran with the ball better in the second half and we had better control coming out from left back after bringing on the young lad (Mark Lynch). In the first half, we were giving the ball away too much, and we were missing too many one-twos.
"In the second half, we had two good long-range shots from Mukoro (Gbereubie), who is a fabulous ball player, the first one going narrowly wide, and their 'keeper making a very good save when he tipped the ball over the bar,
"But we didn't create enough clear-cut chances like Mukoro's two shots. We wanted to get in behind their two centre-backs, but we didn't succeed in doing that.
"Instead we persisted in putting the ball in front of them which they cleared easily."
ST ANTHONY'S: Rob McNamee; Charlie Maguire, Cillian Thompson, Darren Byrne; Mick Rooney; Larry Kenna, Lee Dutton, Emmo Kenna, Kyle O'Reilly; Patrick Morris, Darren Colllopy. Subs: Alex Ward for Collopy (50), Craig Meehan for Larry Kenna (65), Stafford Quade for Gerrard (77), Stewart Connolly for O'Reilly (85).
GREYSTONES UNITED AFC: Brian Kennedy; Dave Ivory, Eoin Kearney, Joe Gerrard, Conor Mitchell: Cillian Brosnan, Sean Smith, Mukoro Gbereubie, Colin McDevitt; Anto Fermoyle, Kurt Starke. Subs: Mark Lynch for Kearney (40). Dave Molloy for Smith (50), Fionn Thompson for Ivory (51).