Navan O'Mahonys outscored 14-man Seneschalstown by 12 points in the second-half of this SFC Group B clash at Pairc Tailteann on Saturday evening.
O'Mahonys ................ 3-14
Seneschalstown .......... 0-9
A close game turned 90 seconds into the second-half when in the aftermath of Stephen Bray's goal, Seneschalstown lost goalkeeper David Lyons to a straight red card following an apparent clash with another O'Mahonys' player.
The result sees O'Mahonys take third place in Group B. They face a play-off with the third side in Group C (St Patrick's or Na Fianna) for a quarter-final joust against Summerhill.
Not alone were Seneschalstown down the man who made some fine saves in the first-half, they missed David Lyons' restarts. To their credit the Yellow Furze side responded with a trio of points from Joe and Brian Sheridan (two) to leave the nearby board reading 1-7 to 0-8.
It was a temporary respite for the team in yellow and blue. Making the most of numerical advantage, O'Mahonys outscored Seneschalstown by 2-7 to 0-1 over the remainder.
On the back of losses to Moynalvey and Simonstown, O'Mahonys were well set up here. Two former county men played central roles. Cormac McGuinness wore the 11 shirt but was very effective as a sweeper.
Stephen Bray, the nominal full-forward, covered an amount of ground. In addition to scoring 1-1, he created openings for other scores.
Damien Moran and Bray laid the foundation for Dylan Regan's 40th minute goal. Then Brian Sheridan missed a close range free. Entering the final quarter Dylan Regan bagged his second goal with an exquisite low finish at the old swimming pool end. That left it 3-9 to 0-8.
O'Mahonys tagged on five further points in the final 10 minutes. The sequence was puncuated by a Joe Sheridan pointed 45. It folllowed a brilliant full-stretch save by Marcas Brennan from Cathal Finnegan.
As Seneschstown pressed to soften the scoreline, strong defensive work - with James O'Malley particularly impressive - ensured O'Mahonys kept a clean sheet for the second match running.
Ruairi O 'Coileain brought his tally to six points with two frees. O'Mahonys might have got in for another goal, in stoppage time, but sub 'keeper Robert Ruddy was equal to Paul Whelehan's effort.
In the opening half, O'Mahonys played towards their own ground with what ever advantage the diagonal wind offered.
The scores were tied twice in the opening 10 minutes when frees from Shane Gillespie and Ruairi O Coileain were countered by efforts from Brian (free) and Damien Sheridan.
O'Mahonys might have got in for goal in this phase of proceedings but the final pass didn't find Gillespie. Points from O Coileain and Gillespie made it 0-4 to 0-2 with 11 minutes gone. The 2015 champions had another goal chance but Whelehan shot high and Seneschalstown 'keeper Davy Lyons blocked the effort.
Whelehan moved O'Mahonys a goal clear after 19 minutes with help from Gillespie. Four minutes later the number 15 was narrowly wide with low effort at the end of a sweeping move.
Seneschalstown had their goal chances too with sub Cathal Finnegan going close twice, the first effort hit the crossbar. The second forced a fine save from Marcas Brennan at the expense of a 45 that proved fruitless.
O'Mahonys responded with two O Coileain point s(one free) to open up a four-point gap. Seneschalstown's reply was swift with scores from Brian Maguire and Brian Sheridan to leave the Yellow Furze outfit just two off the pace at the break, 0-7 to 0-5.
O'Mahonys - Marcas Brennan; Ian Matthews, Shane Crosby, Conor Finnegan, James O'Malley, Gary O'Brien, Daragh Maguire; Damien Moran, Stephen Monaghan; Ruairi O Coileain (0-6, 4fs), Cormac McGuinness, Dylan Regan (2-1); Shane Gillespie (0-3, 1f), Stephen Bray (1-1), Paul Whelehan (0-2). Subs - Jake Regan (0-1) for Moran (41), Brian Dillon for D Regan (54), Aodan Mallon for Gillespie (59), Niall Kearney for O'Malley (60), Darren Reilly for Matthews (60).
Seneschalstown - David Lyons; Conor Cowley, Cormac Noonan, Brian Maguire (0-1); Niall Hickey, Joe Cowley, Niall Groome; John Smith, Damien Sheridan; James Byrne, Niall McCabe, Adam Carey; Brian Sheridan (0-5, 3fs), Joe Sheridan (0-3, 1 45), Bryan Clarke. Subs - Paul Carey for J Cowley (6), Cathal Finnegan for B Clarke (16), Sean Noonan for Conor Cowley (ht), Robert Ruddy for Smith (34), Robert Hogan for Carey (44), Gary Conlon for McCabe (54), James Conlon for Groome (60).
Referee - Colm McManus (Gaeil Colmcille)