Boyle return to form to reach last eight

Hodson Bay Group SFC (Group A)

Boyle 0-21    Western Gaels 1-12

Boyle left their inconsistent form behind them in Croghan on Sunday when they blitzed Western Gaels with some superb attacking play and now they will go into their quarter-final clash with Clann na nGael full of confidence after this excellent display.

The conditions were perfect for this must win game for both sides, and Boyle set about their task early with some excellent scores. Donie Smith and Cian McKeon were outstanding with both players scoring 0-7 (six each from play), and some of those points were right out of the top drawer.

Western Gaels battled away gamely but they had no answer to Boyle on the day. With Enda Smith controlling the game at midfield, and Donie, Cian McKeon and Daire Cregg on fire up front, Boyle never looked in trouble and they led 0-11 to 0-5 at half-time.

There was a brief window of opportunity for Western Gaels in the 41st minute when Tadgh McKenna was black carded for a foul on Cathal Cregg, and then Dylan East was shown a red card for his part in the scuffle that followed. But despite being down to 13 men, Boyle dug in and held on to possession very cleverly.

Western Gaels scored a late consolation goal through Dylan Kennedy but the game was over as a contest long before that. Now Boyle can look forward to that big game against Clann while Western Gaels will face a relegation battle when they will face the losers of the Strokestown v Michael Glavey’s clash.

Boyle: Robert Kearney; Daniel Casey, Luke Glennon, Killian Cox; Oisin Cregg (0-1), Tadgh McKenna, Marc O’Connor; Roch Hanmore, Cathal Feely (0-1); Enda Smith (0-1), Dylan East, David  Flanagan (0-1); Daire Cregg (0-2), Donie Smith (0-7, 2 frees), C. McKeon (0-7, 1 mark).    Subs: Eden Kerins for Flanagan (39), Niall O’Donnell (0-1) for Hanmore (54).

Western Gaels: Aaron Dowd; Ciaran Cafferky, Tommie Devine, Seanie McDermott; Tommy Gill, Dylan Kennedy (1-0), Barry Creighton; Conor Sampey, Niall Higgins; J. Higgins, Cathal Cregg (0-1), Rory Hester (0-2); Kevin Higgins (0-1), Finbar Cregg (0-5, 5 frees), James McDonnell (0-2).  Subs: Orin Hester for Sampey (37), Oisin Ward for Gill (45), Brian Cafferky for J. Higgins (54).

Referee: Dermot Lyons.

Man of the Match: Donie Smith (Boyle)