St Dominic’s stun favourites

Mulryan Construction Roscommon IFC semi-final

St Dominic’s 1-9 St Faithleach’s 0-10

 

Seamus Duke

 

A stunning first-half display, at the end of which they led by a 1-6 to 0-1, was the key for St. Dominic’s as they shocked pre-match favourites St. Faithleach’s in this well contested IFC semi-final at Dr. Hyde Park last Saturday.

Despite losing key midfielder Keith Doyle through injury during the week, Thomas Gilleran’s side tore into St. Faithleach’s from the throw-in, and with their half-back line of Brendan O’Meara, Eoin McCormack and Jack Lohan providing a superb platform, they overpowered a Ballyleague side for whom nothing went right on the day. The loss of talisman Diarmuid Murtagh with a leg injury halfway through the first half was a huge blow to St. Faithleach’s.

Even more misfortune was to befall the Ballyleague men in the second half as Stephen Ormsby was shown a red card (a yellow card following an earlier black card) and sub Colm Mangan was shown a black card, meaning that Walter Burke’s side finished the game with 13 men.

To be fair, St. Dominic’s had the damage done long before then. With less than five minutes on the clock, they led by 1-2 to no score. After early points from Daire Keenan and Conor Fallon, in the fourth minute Darragh Donnelly was engaged by three Faithleach’s defenders. He went to ground and referee James Murray pointed to the spot. Donnelly crashed home the resultant spot-kick.

With Keenan, the ageless Fallon and Tommy Hurley always a threat, Thomas Gilleran’s side cruised into a 1-6 to 0-0 lead. Nothing was going right for St. Faithleach’s and it took them until the 5th minute of injury-time to record their first score, a point from distance from Cathal Gunn.

The Ballyleague men did improve in the second half but St. Dominic’s always seemed capable of getting a score to keep their vaunted opponents at arm’s length. St. Faithleach’s reduced the margin to two points deep into injury-time – with Cathal Connelly, Ciaran Murtagh, Kevin Farrell and Cian Glennon leading the fightback – but the damage was done and the Knockcroghery men were through.

So now we have an intriguing final in prospect, with Oran – in their fourth final in five years – meeting a St. Dominic’s side which nobody will be writing off after what has been a splendid campaign so far.

St. Dominic’s: Mark Miley; Kyran Dockery, Michal Feeley, Micheal Byrne; Jack Lohan, Eoin McCormack, Brendan O’Meara; Paddy Fallon, Tom Appleby; Declan Dowling, Darren Dolan, Tom Hurley (0-1); Conor Fallon (0-4, three frees), Daire Keenan (0-2), Darragh Donnelly (1-2, 1-0 pen, one free, one ’45). Subs used: Jack O’Beirne for Dowling (47), Noel Watson for Hurley (60).

St. Faithleach’s: Michael O’Donnell; David Harrison, Mikey Cox, Adrian Murtagh; Mikey Dunne, Kevin Farrell (0-1), Cian Glennon; Cathal Gunn (0-1), Dave Rooney; Ciaran Murtagh (0-8, six frees), Brian Murtagh, Conall Kennelly; Diarmuid Murtagh, Darragh Hussey, Stephen Ormsby. Subs: Darren Nerney for Harrison (10), Aidan Dooney for Diarmuid Murtagh (13), Jonathan Hussey for D Hussey (h/t), Stephen Walsh for Rooney (53), Colm Mangan for Dooney (58).

Referee: James Murray (Tulsk).

 

Man of the Match

 

Brendan O’Meara (St. Dominic’s).