Minor Football Championship: Mullingar Shamrocks 3-13 St Loman’s 2-8
A high scoring local Minor championship Derby that was not always characterised with accurate shooting ended in a comfortable victory for Mullingar Shamrocks over the near neighbours. Shamrocks showed a welcome return to early season form and dominated for most of the hour and notched the first score courtesy of a Paul Keating point. The St Loman’s response was immediate and ended with Eoin Meehan shooting to the net, the first of many scores kicked by the corner forward. Shamrocks retaliated with points by Conor Heffernan, Alex Sheerin (0-2) and Paul Keating again to establish an 0-5 to 1-0 lead after 15 minutes. Arthur Lazar kicked a long range point for St Loman’s before Ryan Kelly added two points for Shamrocks. The final score of the half provided a classic example of the virtues of the old-style quick delivery football. Adam Glynn won the ball deep in defence and found Gavin Pierce who delivered a lightning quick and accurate pass along the sideline to Ryan Kelly. Ryan fielded and delivered an inch perfect pass to Donnacha Maguire who had made the run from midfield. Donnacha collected and shot to the net for a crucial goal that sent Shamrocks into a 1-7 to 1-1 lead. A great save by Adam Buckley prevented an immediate St Loman’s response for a similar score as Gavin Pierce and Ryan Kelly added two more points before the interval (1-9 to 1-1).
The game effectively ended as a contest within minutes of the restart. Ryan Kelly’s pointed free was followed by three points from the accurate boot of Eoin Meehan (1-10 to 1-4). The second Shamrocks goal was the decisive score. As St Loman’s began a movement across their half-back line, Arthur Lazar’s lateral pass was brilliantly anticipated and intercepted by Paul Keating who sent Callum Rigney Clyne flying through on goal. Callum created the goal scoring opportunity for Conor Heffernan who finished in style for Shamrocks’ second goal. Peter Finch won possession from the restart and sent Callum Rigney Clyne steaming through for a second time. This time Alex Sheerin, ever the predator, collected Callum’s pass and shot to the net to extend the Shamrocks’ lead to 11 points (3-10 to 1-5). Gavin Pierce, Ben Sheerin (a battling score by the corner back who was one of the stars of the night) and Ryan Kelly added points to complete the Shamrocks’ total. In between these scores, Eoin Meehan added to the St Loman’s total, a collection that included the last goal of the evening as he finished the night with a tally of 2-7 to his credit. There is a lesson to be absorbed from this as well – it does not pay to foul when a dead ball expert like Meehan is doing his John Heslin impersonation act.
Mullingar Shamrocks: Adam Buckley (Matas Puida); Adam Glynn, Ty Masterson (Hugh O’Sullivan Sexton), Ben Sheerin (0-1); James Flynn (John Shaw), Peter Finch (Ronan Byrne), Ben McNamee; Ameen Hacini (Mohammed Mohammed), Donnacha Maguire (1-0); Paul Keating (0-2) [Andrew Gavigan], Conor Heffernan (1-1) [Jack Toal], Callum Rigney Clyne [Padraic Casey]; Gavin Pearse (0-2) [Matt Shaw], Alex Sheerin (1-2), Ryan Kelly (0-5).