Slick St Colman’s overcome Omagh
Tuesday, 12 February 2013
St Colman's 1-16 Omagh CBS 1-12.
ST Colman's eased into the semi-finals of the MacRory Cup after a convincing victory over Omagh CBS in Emyvale on Saturday.
The Blues took their foot off the pedal in the closing stages but by the 45th minute there was only going to be one winner.
Saval's Kealan Rice was outstanding up front as he won every ball delivered in his direction and scored five terrific points from play. His partnership with Hogan Cup winner Jack Haughey is a potent strike force and the two pronged full-forward put the game to bed almost immediately after half-time.
Up until the break, there wasn't much to separate the teams. St Colman's were losing out in the break ball at midfield and their defenders weren't making shoulder tackles or marking their men tightly enough, thus giving Omagh an invitation to attack.
The sides were level on two points apiece with ten minutes played, Rice and Crossmaglen's Oisin O'Neill chipping in with scores for the Newry side.
Rice and big Dara Noonan extended St Colman's lead but within a two minute flash the College were trailing CBS.
Omagh's Brendan Donaghy was permitted to solo 35 metres unchallenged before blasting into the bottom corner of the net, for a well-taken goal. Having conceded a further two points the Blues could have faltered but Conal Brown, who was outstanding throughout typified the character of this team by kicking over a difficult point when his team needed it.
Young Shamrocks star Jack Haughey swung over a free and Brown weighed in with his second point to leave St Colman's only a point behind, before Lissummon's Noonan crashed in a stunning goal.
Rice floated a high pass in towards the Omagh goalmouth and at the edge of the square and with his back to goal; Noonan coolly fisted the ball into the roof of the net.
And there was only enough time for Haughey to grab another point to turn the game in St Colman's favour to 1-08 to 1-05 at the break.
In the second half the Blues played with much more conviction. In defence they tightened up, making strong tackles and winning back possession with captain Micheal Finnegan of Belleek having a great game at full-back.
In the opening 10 minutes of the second half St Colman's made as many turnovers as they completed in the entire first half and the whole team was tuned in. Passing was crisp and swift and up front the boys were on song.
Haughey pointed his third free, midfielder Jamie Curran kicked over, while Noonan and the lively Curtis Sands stretched the lead of a now rampant College. Omagh replied with two points but Rice and Curran struck between the Omagh posts again and with 10 minutes remaining the Newry side led 1-15 to 1-08.
However, the last 10 minutes were a tad nervy as Omagh weighed in with four points but a fine long-range strike from Sands on 60 minutes gave the Blue Army something to cheer about and the College had victory in the bag.
Unfortunately the game ended unsavourily as rows developed and Gough received a red card for attempting to rescue a team-mate, ruling him out of the semi-final against St Pat's Maghera.
ST COLMAN'S: John O'Hare, Aidan McKiernan, Micheal Finnegan, John Brown, Miceal O'Hare, Joe McDermott, Conal Brown (0-2), Jamie Curran (0-2), Conal Gough, Curtis Sands (0-2), Dara Noonan (1-2, 1 free), Oisin O'Neill (0-1), Liam McGreevy, Jack Haughey (0-2, frees) and Kealan Rice (0-5).
OMAGH CBS: Sean Fox, Fiachra McNulty, Peter McKenna, Micheal Flanagan (0-1), Cillian McCann, Colm O'Neill, Connor Meyler, Brendan Donaghy (1-1), Padraig McGirr, Stephen O'Donnell (0-1), Darragh Kavanagh (0-3, 2 frees), Sean Fox, Ruairi Sludden (0-5, 2 frees), Thomas McGrath (0-1, free) and Aidan Fullerton.
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