Cullyhanna back on track
Tuesday, 22 July 2014
St. Patrick's 1-9. Armagh Harps 0-7.
WHILE previous defeats on the road had derailed the Cullyhanna league title challenge, the senior squad got back to winning ways at home to Harps in a recent fixture.
A good start was the key to this victory and indeed the five point margin which existed at both half-time and full-time was garnered in the opening ten minutes. Kieran Hoey initiated the scoring after a intelligent combination play with James Carragher while a forceful Barry McConville punch from midfield created a Tony Donnelly score.
Colm Hoey landed an outstanding point five minutes in and while Harps responded with a point, St Pat's took control of the game with ten minutes played when a long ball from Barry McConville was fielded by Eugene Casey who exhibited great strength to turn and fire a Cullyhanna goal. Although Harps kicked the next point, a good Aidan Nugent run saw him enter his name on the scoresheet while in injury time, both sides landed points, the Cullyhanna effort coming from a pointed Tony Donnelly free as St Pat's led by 1-5 to 0-3 at the break.
Cullyhanna started the second half well with another pointed Tony Donnelly free before Harps registered three points in a row to threaten to get back into the match. With nine minutes remaining, Gareth Mackin landed a fine point to steady the Cullyhanna ship and the points were virtually secured six minutes from time when the returning Rory O'Neill produced a lung bursting run before kicking a magnificent score from the sideline.
A further Harps minor score was never going to be enough with Tony Donnelly having the final say in the match as a quick free interchanging with Gareth Mackin allowed the former to kick an excellent score whilst under severe pressure as St Pat's ran out deserved five point victors.
While the football on display was hardly of a champagne nature, Cullyhanna will have been relieved to return to winning ways as preparations continue for next month's championship outing against Dromintee. On the night, Barry McConville and Pearse Casey excelled at midfield with Sean Connell also having a fine game in defence.
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