McConville stands tall as Hoops miss opportunity to close gap

Doolargy All Stars' Barry McGill and Denys Cholach contest this ball in the Summer League game in Hiney Park
Muirhevnamor FC can thank their goalkeeper, Jason McConvillle, for keeping them on track for a historic fourth Summer League title in a row as he denied Shamrocks FC a deserved victory in this top of the table clash on Thursday night.

Muirhevnamor FC can thank their goalkeeper, Jason McConvillle, for keeping them on track for a historic fourth Summer League title in a row as he denied Shamrocks FC a deserved victory in this top of the table clash on Thursday night.

The result leaves Peter McGinn’s champions four points ahead of the Fatima outfit - who do have a game in hand - with just three games left to play, one of them a walk over against Dundalk Inter.

Jimmy Cooney almost gave Shamrocks a perfect start, his 1st minute effort just going wide of the upright.

It took the home side 17 minutes to create their first chance of the game when striker Mickey O’Kane headed over the bar. Ten minutes later O’Kane should have scored but he screwed his shot wide of the goal.

The Hoops began to get on top of things and Stephen Fisher brought a fantastic save out of McConville.

At the other end, the half ended with Shamrocks goalkeeper Padraig Gorham twice called into action, executing a couple of superb saves to deny Colin Finan and Ray McCann.

The home side began the second-half with intent, pinning Shamrocks back in their own half, but 10 minutes into the restart it was the visitors who looked like they had opened the scoring.

Deco Moran raced away on the right and crossed for Owen Armstrong to head home but the goal was ruled out for offside.

Spurred on by this, Shamrocks upped the tempo, forcing a series of free-kicks. And, from one of Drew Duffy’s deliveries, Aidan Sheehy rose highest to head the Fatima men into the lead.

Minutes later Jimmy Cooney was unlucky not to put the visitors 2-0 up, his shot coming back off the post.

The Mor were let off the hook again when defender Stefan McKevitt’s headed clearance came back off the upright and fell to Armstrong but he failed to find the target.

Shamrocks were made to pay dearly for their missed chances when a very subdued O’Kane was put clear by Sean Conlon and from the edge of the box he rifled an effort past Gorham to level the game with 20 minutes to play.

Both sides concentrated on defending their goals for the remainder of the game but in the final minute Stephen Fisher was denied a winning goal thanks to a magnificent save from McConville.