Christy Ring Cup Round 2 Antrim 2-14 Roscommon 1-12
Roscommon senior hurlers stepped up in class and coped admirably when they played Antrim in Pearse Park in Dunloy, Co. Antrim in the second round of the Christy Ring Cup last Saturday.
Roscommon gave the home side plenty to think about in a very good display. It was only in the final fifteen minutes that Antrim pulled away to win.
Roscommon got off to a great start when Jerry Fallon scored two frees and a point from play in the first ten minutes. Antrim then replied with three points to level the match after fifteen minutes.
The teams exchanged scores until half-time when Roscommon went in leading eight points to seven. Cillian Egan scored four great points from play and Cathal Dolan scored a good point to complete the Roscommon scoring for the first half.
Two minutes into the second half Noel Fallon hit a long puck-out which was caught by Tomas Featherson who passed to Adrian Murphy who headed straight for goal. He pulled the full-back out of position with his run and Murphy passed to an unmarked Jamie Lawlor who crashed the ball to the Antrim net. At this stage Antrim knew they were in a match. For the next ten minutes both sides hurled for their lives and Antrim got a well-taken goal to bring them back into the match.
Then, crucially, Antrim added three points. Roscommon missed some long-range frees that would have kept them in touch. Shortly after, Antrim, against the run of play, found the Roscommon net and in a 12-minute period scored 2-4 to no Roscommon score. The Antrim goals were scored by Nigel Elliot and Conor Carson.
Other teams would have given up and allowed the opposition to pile on the scores at this stage. But this Roscommon team fought to the bitter end, making Antrim earn their victory. The Roscommon team and management can be very proud of their performance in this game against a much-fancied opposition.
In a very entertaining game, best for Roscommon were Noel Fallon, who made some fine saves, and whose long puck-outs and clearances were excellent. Also particularly impressive were Peter Kellehan, Micheal Kelly, Cathal Dolan, Tomas Featherson and Cillian Egan.
Roscommon: Noel Fallon; Ian Delaney, Peter Kellehan, Liam Kilcline; Jason Kilkenny, Micheal Kelly (0-1), Alan Moore; Cathal Dolan (0-3), Eamon Flanagan; Tomas Seale, Tomas Fetherston, Jerry Fallon (0-4, two frees and one ‘65); Cillian Egan (0-4), Ronan O’Meara, Adrian Murphy. Subs: Jamie Lawlor (1-0) for Seale, Shane Curley for Moore, Naos Connaughton for Fallon and Gearoid Keenan for Murphy.
* Roscommon now play Down (away) next Saturday where they will be hoping to continue their good form. A win would secure a semi-final slot in the Christy Ring Cup, which would be a marvellous achievement.