Emmet Mullen races awat Emmett Duffy on Friday night. PIC: Arthur Kinahan
Anglo Printers Junior Football Championship Group 4 – Round 1
Naomh Malachi GFC 3-14 Sean McDermotts GFC 1-10
A virtuoso performance from Jack Kirwan and a two late second half goals ensured Naomh Malachi brought two opening weekend points back to Courtbane, with Sean McDermotts on the wrong end of a 10 point defeat in Stabannon.
The Mals’ put themselves in the driving seat to finish top of the group standings at the end of an outstanding win, as they cut through a usually obdurate Seans with ease at times. Their performance
Both sides have had mixed league campaigns in Division 3, without the Mountrush men winning their last clash back in April but they gave themselves too much to do on Friday – trailing by six points at the break and more by the end, despite Tony Kelly’s late goal.
Kevin McMahon hit the games’ two opening points before the Mals’ hit back through Kirwan, McElroy and a superbly hit major from Padraig Moley. McElroy and youngster Dylan Rooney each split the posts twice more as Thomas Duffy’s men extended their advantage.
Despite McMahon’s third score from play and a routine Kelly free, the Seans struggled to keep any kind of pace with their opponents. McMahon’s fourth minor of the game left the score 1-08 to 0-05 at the interval.
Just as was the case in the first half, the Seans’ drew first blood in the second half with two points but that just spurred the Mals’ into action. McElroy should have scored a goal with the net gaping, but under pressure from Sean McMahon, he pointed instead. Moley and Colin Rooney added further scores, as did sub Lorcan Myles for the Seans.
But after Jack Kirwan’s outstanding effort from the left dropped into the net, the game was all but won. It was ample reward for a fine performance in the half forward line.
Sub Colin Hoey and Christopher Smith both notched either side of a well-taken goal from Dylan Rooney and while Kelly helped a high ball beyond the Mals’ goalkeeper with the clock in injury time, it mattered little.
Naomh Malachi GFC: Christopher McCauley, David Begley, David Rogers, Stephen Burns, Jamie Kelly, Stephen Smith, Emmett Mullen, Padraig Moley (1-02), Christopher Smith (0-01), Dylan Rooney (1-03), Jack Kirwan (1-01), Donal Begley, Mark Meegan (0-01), Ronan McElroy (0-04), Colin Rooney (0-01).
Subs: Colin Hoey (0-01), for Colin Rooney, Paul Gogarty for Dylan Rooney
Sean McDermotts GFC: Steven Carrie, Kevin McGahon, Sean McMahon, Leigh Ross, Daniel Commins, Peter Osbourne, Ian Corbally, Declan Carroll, Patrick Osbourne, Emmett Duffy, Cormac Walsh, David O’Neill (0-01), David McArdle, Tony Kelly (1-03), Kevin McMahon (0-05)
Subs: Lorcan Myles (0-01) for Ian Corbally, BJ Matthews for Emmett Duffy
Referee: Brian Brady (Kilkerley Emmets)