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Kelly rescues Vins for replay

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Seneschalstown's Andrew Collins tussles with Hugh Coughlan of St. Vincent's

Seneschalstown's Andrew Collins tussles with Hugh Coughlan of St. Vincent's

Seneschalstown's Andrew Collins tussles with Hugh Coughlan of St. Vincent's

The club that once turned its nose up to any outside influence required a Mayo man to bail them out in Parnell Park yesterday as St Vincent's and Seneschalstown drew their Leinster club SFC quarter-final.

With the Dublin champions struggling badly for any method or penetration in attack throughout the second half, half-back Pat Kelly shot forward as injury time approached and drove over his third point of the afternoon for parity.

With referee Eugene Murtagh apparently unaware that extra time should have been played, the former Mayo half-back's point forced a replay in Navan next weekend.

It was only Vincent's second score of the half after Mossie Quinn's 31st minute free helped them to build on a 0-9 to 1-4 interval lead.

In between those Quinn and Kelly scores, however, Vincent's lost their way badly despite having an extra man after Seneschalstown corner-back Colin Clarke received a second yellow card at the end of the third quarter after tangling with Brian Maloney.

The performance had Vincent's manager Mickey Whelan perplexed afterwards and looking in a particular direction as to where his team can improve on Sunday next.

"A few of our established stars will have to do more," he suggested.

"I was very happy with the way some of our younger players performed -- the corner-backs Paul Conlon and Hugh Gill were great. But we are lucky to have a second chance. We almost paid the price for what we missed in the first half."

Ailments

No doubt Whelan had Dermot Connolly and Quinn in mind most when he reflected on Vincent's ailments.

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Connolly kicked four wides in all and faded alarmingly in the second half while Quinn, who only returned from holidays in Florida on Friday, took a similar path and should have equalised before Kelly came to the rescue.

Seneschalstown will see areas for improvement this week too. Bryan Clarke, the hero of their Meath final replay win over Navan O'Mahony's seven days earlier, was replaced in the second half. Clarke scored nine points from placed balls in the Meath replay but drew a blank here as most of the free-taking duties went to Brian Sheridan who returned from injury.

Sheridan finished with five in all, three from frees to match older brother Joe's 1-2 contribution.

Joe Sheridan's goal came from a penalty 23 minutes in as they trailed by 0-4 to 0-3. Inevitably it was the option of "route one" in Joe's direction that created the opportunity as he broke Robert Ruddy's delivery favourably for Clarke who was fouled.

In a stroke, all Vincent's early credits had been wiped out and their wastefulness looked like it would come back to haunt them.

But in a six minute spell after the penalty they scored five unanswered points through Maloney, Connolly, Quinn, Kelly and Kevin Golden to lead by 0-9 to 1-3 before Brian Sheridan broke their momentum at the other end.

Resolution

Even then Vincent's should have taken a more substantial lead into the second half as their Tipperary midfielder Hugh Coughlan blazed wide from a perfect position just before the break.

Seneschalstown defended very well in the second half with Stephen Sheridan, Andrew Collins and Cormac Quinn showing great resolution.

They were helped by Vincent's propensity to labour in possession, a point mentioned by Whelan afterwards.

Damien Sheridan took a hold at midfield for the Meath champions and Joe prospered better on Eoin Brady in the second half. By the 52nd minute they were ahead again when Brian Sheridan pointed a free contentiously awarded by referee Eugene Murtagh.

Vincent's challenge looked to be running out of momentum a Maloney shot destined for the net was blocked off the line and then a Quinn shot for a point off his left sailed inches wide. But Kelly, as he had done all afternoon, stepped up with a magnificent leveller.

Scorers -- St Vincent's: T Quinn (1f), P Kelly 0-3 each, B Maloney 0-2, K Golden, N Billings, D Connolly all 0-1 each.

Seneschalstown: J Sheridan 1-2 (1-0 pen), B Sheridan 0-5 (3f), R Ruddy 0-1.

St Vincent's: M Savage; P Conlon, E Brady, H Gill; T Doyle, G Brennan, P Kelly; H Coughlan, M O'Shea; K Golden, T Diamond, N Billings; B Maloney, D Connolly, T Quinn. Subs: P Gilroy for Billings (40), R Traynor for Connolly (59).

Seneschalstown: D Lyons; S Sheridan, A Collins, C Clarke; M Carey, C Quinn, C Gleeson; R Ruddy, D Sheridan; C Macken, A McCann, J Cowley; B Clarke, J Sheridan, B Sheridan. Subs: D Byrne for Cowley (46), G Conlon for Clarke, G Sheridan for McCann (54), J Byrne for Gleeson (55).

REF -- Eugene Murtagh


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