Sunday, August 18, 2019

Sat Aug 17 - Intermediate Football Final: Cork v Shannon Blues

Shannon Blues 1-15 Cork 2-17

It took extra time to separate the Blues and Cork in what was the first Intermediate Final played in Boston in 13 seasons.  The Blues had a 2 point lead late in the game and Cork leveled with 2 late frees to force the extra period.  Cork outscored the Blues, 7 points to 5, in the extra 20 minutes to claim their third trophy in as many years having won the junior A championship the last two years. 

Cork Captain, Adam Kenny accepts the Donie Kenneally Cup 
from Kathleen Kenneally.
It was neck and neck between the teams for most of the first half.  After the sides traded points to get things going, the Blues went on a four points to no score flurry.  Playing some lovely passing football the Blues looked like they might start to pull away.  The period was almost capped with what would have been a brilliant goal, however, Ger Comer’s shot went just the far side of the posts.

Cork were back in it after a well taken goal from Nick O’Mullane.  The Cork corner forward gathered the ball expertly and finished with a left footed shot that took the keeper off guard.  O’Mullane followed with a stylish point and just like that the teams were all square.  The Blues’ Paddy O’Connor pointed and was followed by Conor Mullen as the passing and movement found the routes through the Cork rearguard.  O’Mullane pointed to make it a 1-4 to 0-8 half time score in favour of the Blues.

Cork soon had regained the lead, a goal right off the throw in had the rebels ahead.  It was a classic move with the ball into O’Mullane quickly dished to the inrushing Tiernan Rushe who finished well.  The Blues answered with a Ger Comer point, however Cork went on a three point tear, 2 of the points very well taken efforts from Jack Lacey and Jack Barrett.  Barrett was all over the place in the Cork forward line making the play, and when the man from Leixlip had the ball in his hand things happened for Cork.  Captain, Adam Kenny calling the shots at center back and snuffed out a number of forays forward from the Blues..

The Blues had a good spell, one in which they might have regretted a couple of missed chances.  Kieran McEnry made a couple of fine saves, first from Conor Mullen and second from Paddy O’Connor.  The Blues also missed a couple of chances of points as the ball drifted wide from scoring positions until Darren Wallace pointed.  The missed opportunities proved to be warning signs for Cork.

Dancin' in the Dark:  Cork won it in extra time on Saturday evening as the light faded.
A goal did come eventually from O’Connor who went low and into the corner from the 14 yard line and the Blues led by one with 8 minutes left.  Maurice Young followed with a point and the Blues were in the driver’s seat with the finish line in view.  The teams traded points before Cork came back and won two 14 yard frees that were converted by O’Mullane to put the game into extra time.

Cork pushed it home in the added 20 minutes.  With the rebels turning the Blues and keeping their opponents hemmed inside their own half for long stretches, points went over from O’Mullane, A Barrett free, Jack Lacey and another free from O’Mullane.  The Blues managed two points in the first 10 minutes, but were held scoreless in the final 10 minutes as players had to either hobble off the field, or get on field treatment as muscles cramped up. Barret, Frank Dillon and Darragh Murphy capped off the win as the darkness fell and the mosquitos came out.  It was a great win for Cork and a great advertisement for Intermediate football in its first year back to Boston.
Blues:  Mike Moriarty, Eamonn Kilgallon, Derek O’Brien, Darren O’Donovan, Tom Hannon, Conor Mullen, Pat Murray, Maurice Young, Joe McHugh, Paddy O’Connor, Conor Fitzgerald, Darren Wallace, Ger Comer.

Cork:  Kieran McEnry, Mike Carolan, Frank Dillon, Jack Lacey, Adam Kenny, Emmet Smith, Jack Lynch, Mark Dalton, Jack Barret, Darragh Murphy, Tiernan Rushe, Conor Greene, Nick O’Mullane.
By Rory O'Donnell

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