Mulryan Construction IFC Semi-Final
Castlerea St. Kevin’s 1-8
Oran will have another shot at intermediate glory after an impressive victory over Castlerea St. Kevin’s last Sunday afternoon. Castlerea were reduced to 14 men midway through the second half and that gave Oran the initiative and they always looked the likely victors from that point on.
Darren McDermott opened his and Castlerea’s account with a free in the second minute whilst James Fitzpatrick got Oran off the mark shortly after with a well taken point. Ciaran Lawless put Oran ahead with a great point from distance before Castlerea had the game’s first big moment. A long ball into the Oran penalty area from Ronan Raftery found Colm McDermott who turned quickly and fired a shot into the bottom corner to leave Castlerea two points up after ten minutes.
Castlerea will be disappointed that they couldn’t add a few more points and leave a bit of daylight between the sides after their goal. Oran did well to settle and two frees from Ciaran Lawless and Charlie Carthy left the sides level again after the first quarter.
The sides then exchanged scores. A fine long-range point from Hugh Rooney for Castlerea was cancelled out by a free from Carthy shortly after. Castlerea did have a short purple patch just before half-time with three unanswered points in three minutes. A free from Ronan Raftery was followed up with great scores from Jack Keane and Seamus Stenson. Oran had a goal chance just before the break when Charlie Carthy was bearing down on the Castlerea goal however his shot went over the crossbar to leave Castlerea two up at the interval.
It took Oran just five minutes of the second period to level the game up with two frees from the reliable duo of Ciaran Lawless and Charlie Carthy. The game’s big turning point however came in the 42nd minute when referee Brendan Healy decided to show Ronan Raftery of Castlerea a straight red card for an off the ball incident. Castlerea really struggled for the remainder of the game and were only able to add three more points to their tally.
While it was mostly one-way traffic in the closing stages, the sides did exchange scores shortly after the red card through Kieran Whyte for Oran and a free from Darren McDermott for Castlerea, however this would be the last time the sides would be level in the match.
Points from Gearoid Keenan, Kieran Whyte, Ciaran Lawless and Darragh Walsh left daylight between the sides before Whyte blasted the ball into the roof of the net to seal a place in the final for Oran. Jack Earley added a final point for Oran who will be looking forward to a second final in two years in less than three weeks’ time.
Oran: M Monaghan; J Martin, C Walsh, K Concannon; J Casey, E Grady, M Dwyer; J Regan, K Whyte (1-2); R Farrell, C Lawless (0-4, 3 frees), E Kenny; C Carthy (0-4, 3 frees), C Casey, J Fitzpatrick (0-1). Subs: J Earley (0-1) for Kenny (half-time), G Keenan (0-1) for C Casey (half-time), D Walsh (0-1) for Farrell (52), S Casey for Concannon (56), E Kenny for Keenan (60).
Castlerea St. Kevin’s: K Higgins; H Rooney (0-1), D Quinn, C McDermott (1-0); M Conroy, M Kelly, C Dineen; N Collins (0-1), E O’Connell; M Killelea, S Stenson (0-1), J Keane (0-1); N Bligh, R Raftery (0-1, 1 free), D McDermott (0-2, 1 free). Subs: A Lyons for Dineen (21), R Curran (0-1) for Bligh (46), A McDermott for Stenson (49), D Creaton for Killelea (54).
Referee: Brendan Healy