12 Nov 2014

Piercestown bridge sixteen year gap

0 Comment

Piercestown 2-7 Horeswood 0-12

The Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Rackard League Boys’ Football Roinn A title has a new home after Piercestown won their first since 1998 in St. Patrick’s Park last Wednesday. For the first time since St. Aidan’s, Enniscorthy won their title in 2006, the cup somewhere other than back to Gorey CBS after their seven year stretch of titles was finally ended. After defeating the reigning champions by a point in a semi-final replay the week previous, the Piercestown-Murrintown boys had one more obstacle to overcome in the form of a classy Horeswood team looking to complete a boys and girls Roinn A double on the night and add to their Roinn B title from last year.

The game got off to a breathtaking start with three lightening quick Horeswood points in the opening three minutes through Joe Sullivan, Conor Foley and Cathal Parker. Then Piercestown took the lead with a quick goal and a Killian Barry point. The goal came after Conor Keane chipped a delightful ball over the top of the defence for David Cantwell to run onto and finish.

Points from Matthew Foley, Oisin Waters and Joe Sullivan saw the teams go nip and tuck for the opening ten minutes. Piercestown were lucky not to concede a goal after a prolonged goal mouth scramble. Joe O Sullivan thought he had gifted his team the lead once more before Piercestown’s John Codd scored his team’s second goal. Jason Murphy and Joe Sullivan both scored to keep the pressure on Piercestown but a return point from David Cantwell gave his team a slender one point lead going into halftime. Throughout the first half, the battle between Brian Codd and Neil Ennis was a joy to watch as the teams constantly attacked and counterattacked each other.

The second half nearly began with a goal when David Cantwell hit a shot that Ryan Bowe somehow got a hand to despite being unsighted by the crowd in front of him. Ryan then stepped up to kick a 45 off the ground and level affairs for the third time. Two more wonderscores from the talented Joe Sullivan saw Horeswood open up a two point lead in the 35th minute. Horeswood were almost going too well, too early and with the clock ticking down it was Piercestown who gained the last vital burst of momentum.

Ryan Bowe made the save of the match to deny a third Piercestown goal but the ricochet was deflected over the bar from an incoming Piercestown player. Killian Barry got a great score to level the game moments later and Oisin Waters converted a free to restore the Piercestown lead. Piercestown slowly began to drop back and play attacking football from deep and this proved doubly effective as it closed off space in the Horeswood forwards and gave their own forwards room to manoeuvre. Some great play from midfielder Diarmuid O’Leary and the hard working wing forward Killian Barry kept them in the lead. Crunch tackles from both sides ensured the game maintained a sharp edge going in to the final moments.

A massive Oisín Waters score from out on the wing created the breathing space of a two point lead but this didn’t last long as Conor Foley somehow squeezed over a late point to set up a nailbiting finish. In the end, it was the overall Piercestown team effort that got them over the line as some very composed defending saw them hold out for six minutes under relentless pressure. In their drawn semi-final, semi-final replay and this final, the Piercestown team and their excellent goalkeeper Zack Breslin refused to give away a single goal and it was this fantastic team attitude that effectively gave them the hard earned title they deserved. The final whistle brought huge celebration and heartbreaking despair as any epic finale does, but both teams can be very proud for providing a classic final that will live long in the memory.

Piercestown: Zack Breslin, Rory Walsh, Jamie Berry, Evan O’Connor, Rory Devereux, David Codd, Brian Codd, Diarmuid O’Leary, Luke Kavanagh, Killian Barry, Oisín Waters, Francis Dempsey, John Codd, David Cantwell, Conor Keane, Joe Mernagh, Josh Kelly, Cian Clarke, James Molloy, Oisin Doyle, Luke Quirke, Darragh Collins, Kevin Reck, Mark Hennessy

Horeswood: Ryan Rowe, Daryl Walsh, Alex Molloy, Alan Kehoe, James Murphy, Jason Murphy, Josh Shannon, Joe Sullivan, Matthew Foley, Neil Ennis, Conor Foley, Cathal Parker, Kryan Mylett, Kevin Wall, Ryan Mylett, Dermot Clancy, Adam Harris, Ewan Russel, Andrew Crosbie, Lee Kent, Liam Sinnott, William Foley, Aaron Rowe