Second-half goal blitz seals final spot for St Mary’s CBGS

March 11, 2017

St Mary’s CBGS 3-15-1-16 Naas CBS

Paddy Buggy Cup Semi-final St. Mary's CBGS Belfast 3-15 Naas C.B.S 1-17 a

From Kevin Herron in Darver

Danske Bank Mageean Cup champions St Mary’s CBGS showed their battling qualities as they booked a spot in the Paddy Buggy Cup final on March 25th with a hard fought win over Naas CBS at Darver on Friday afternoon.

Paddy Buggy Cup Semi-final St. Mary's CBGS Belfast 3-15 Naas C.B.S 1-17l

An early CJ McKenna point had the Glen Road men up and running as early as the first eleven seconds and further scores from Tiarnan Murphy and Shea Shannon (both from converted frees) had St Mary’s CBGS 0-3 to 0-0 ahead early on.

James Burke hit back for Leinster champions Naas from a converted free. However St Mary’s CBGS hit the next four scores; two from livewire forward Odhran O’Callaghan and two from his partner in the full-forward line Tiarnan Murphy to move the Mageean champions 0-07 to 0-01 ahead approaching the midway point in the opening half.

Naas CBS were just about holding onto St Mary’s coattails through James Burke’s consistency in front of the posts from frees; Burke added two points to his tally and in the aftermath Colm McLarnon and Cathal Dowling traded scores.

Five minutes before the interval an error in the St Mary’s defence allowed Cathal Dowling the opportunity to go in on goal and the Naas CBS forward pulled the trigger and drilled the ball past Philip Kennedy to cut the deficit to a single point, 0-08 to 1-04.

Paddy Buggy Cup Semi-final St. Mary's CBGS Belfast 3-15 Naas C.B.S 1-17e

This woke up St Mary’s and the Glen Road men hit three points in response through two converted frees from Murphy and Shannon and a further point from play by Murphy to leave the score 0-11 to 1-04 at the break.

St Mary’s CBGS were playing against a strong second-half breeze; however within 30 seconds of the restart they raised the green flag through the brilliance of Paddy Doyle who rifled past Philip Tierney to make it 1-11 to 1-04.

Naas CBS hit back though through Burke and corner-forward Ciaran Doyle before three successive converted frees left just two points between the sides.

Gerard Smyth hit St Mary’s first point of the second-period to increase the lead to three, though Burke converted his fourth free of the half to make it a two-point game once more.

The pendulum swung back into St Mary’s favour once again with 41 minutes gone. CJ McKenna struck his second point of the afternoon and within thirty seconds Tiarnan Murphy picked out the darting run of Paddy Doyle who smashed the ball past Tierney for the second time to increase St Mary’s lead to six, 2-13-1-10.

Tiarnan Murphy added a further point from play as St Mary’s purple patch continued, however James Burke notched up his sixth score of the half (from play) and then proceeded to convert three successive frees.

Shea Shannon looked to have grabbed the insurance score for St Mary’s with little under five minutes remaining, but Naas CBS weren’t done yet and James Dolan’s point from play was followed by a seventh converted free by Burke to leave two points the difference once more, 2-15 to 1-16.

With the game in its dying embers Paddy Doyle picked up the ball in the Naas half and took off towards the net. Unselfishly Doyle picked out substitute Caolan Crossan who in turn found Tiarnan Murphy and the O’Donovan Rossa forward crashed the ball into the roof of the net to make it 3-15 to 1-16 with three minutes of injury-time remaining.

It was a hammer blow to the battling Naas men who were dealt a further blow in the aftermath when referee Alfie Devine dismissed wing full-back Ben Blackburne for a reckless challenge on substitute Crossan in the run-up to Murphy’s goal.

After more than four minutes of additional time Devine’s final whistle was appreciated greatly by the St Mary’s CBGS players and supporters who embraced to celebrate a hard fought but deserved victory.

The Glen Road men will now prepare for the Paddy Buggy Cup decider in Semple Stadium, Thurles on March 25th where they will meet the winners of St Josephs College, Galway and John the Baptist Community School.

St Mary’s CBGS: P Kennedy, S Wilson, N McCann, M Napier, D McEnhill, N Gibson, A’O’Brien, CJ McKenna (0-02), S Shannon (0-03f), D Grego, C McLarnon (0-01), G Smyth (0-01), P Doyle (2-00), O O’Callaghan (0-02), T Murphy (1-06, 0-03f).

Subs: C Crossan for D Grego (39 mins), A Bradley for C Crossan (60 mins).

Naas CBS: P Tierney, C Kelleher, R Hogan, B Blackburne, M Moran, J Dolan (0-01), S Leacy, R Boran, SM Donncha, C Dowling (1-01), J Burke (0-13, 0-11f), K Ahearne, C Tobin, S Ryan, C Doyle (0-01).

Sub: H Carroll for C Kelleher (28 mins).

Referee: Alfie Devine

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