SFC: Holders reach knockout phase

August 18, 2013

Navan O'Mahony's Jake Regan
Holders Navan O'Mahonys are through to the quarter-finals of the hoganstand.com SFC on foot of a double scores Group A win over neighbours Seneschalstown at Stamullen on Sunday afternoon.

Navan O'Mahonys 0-10
Seneschalstown 0-5

From the seventh minute when wing-back Gary O'Brien fisted them in front with a trademark point, O'Mahony led for the remainder of the hour with all bar one of their scores coming from play.

Seneschalstown saw Robert Ruddy's 54th minute goal ruled out after the ball was deemed to have gone wide in the build-up. Had it been 'good' the gap would have been down to just two points.

Some tenacious defending and text-book blocks in the latter stages denied Seneschalstown - who were without the suspended Damien Sheridan, sent-off in the win over Walterstown in the previous round.

Seneschalstown's disappointment at their first defeat of the campaign was compounded by the red-carding of full-back Andrew Collins for a challenge on Shane Gillespie before the end.

Though the scoring rate was low, some points on both sides were top-drawer efforts. The blustery conditions at this fine venue provided an additional obstacle to both sides. On the plus side the showers that peppered the area kept a respectful distance from here.

While O'Mahonys managed five points in each half, Seneschalstown did marginally better in the scoring stakes when playing into the diagonal wind in the second period.

O'Brien provided the assist for Gillespie first score. Brian Sheridan notched Seneschalstown opening score from a free in the 12th minute.

By the 21st minute O'Mahonys were 0-4 to 0-1 in front. They might have gone further but Regan's punched goal-attempt was turned out for a 45 by defender Gerry Sheridan.

Nearly 27 minutes had gone before Shane Clarke posted Seneschalstown's first score from play. Gary Conlon was the provider for this fine effort.

O'Brien was again the provider for Jake Regan to land the first of his trio points as the champions headed for the dressing rooms leading by 0-5 to 0-2. O'Mahonys also registered five wides in the opening 30 minutes to Seneschalstown's three.

Having spent most of the opening half on the '40', Joe Sheridan moved to full-forward for the second-half. He got his side's next score, but this well-flighted effort didn't arrive until the 43rd minute.

By then O'Mahonys had only added one point to their interval tally - a well-judged Stephen Bray free from the left hand side - before hitting their most productive phase at the start of the final quarter.

Three points in four minutes included two from Regan and one from Paddy Smyth to leave the board reading 0-9 to 0-3 by the 50th minute.

Seneschalstown outscored O'Mahonys by 0-2 to 0-1 in the final minutes but couldn't avert their first defeat of the campaign. However, the Yellow Furze side remain in the driving seat for one of the other two qualifying spots on offer in this group.

O'Mahonys - Marcas Brennan; Stephen O'Toole, Kevin Reilly, Ian Matthews; Brian Dillon, Niall McKeigue, Gary O'Brien (0-1); Damien Moran, Stephen MacGabhann; Shane Gillespie (0-2), Paddy Smyth (0-1), Alan Forde; Jake Regan (0-3), Stephen Bray (0-2, 1f)), David Bray (0-1). Subs - Henry Finnegan for Forde (46), Darragh Maguire for Matthews (58), Shane Crosby for Gillespie (60).

Seneschalstown - David Lyons; James Byrne, Andrew Collins, Gerry Sheridan ; Mark Carey, Davy Matthews, Niall Groome; Robert Ruddy, Cormac Noonan; Brian Clarke, Shane Clarke (0-2.1f), Gary Conlon; Joe Sheridan (0-1), Brian Sheridan (0-2,1f), Peter Waters. Subs - Stephen Finnegan for Waters (19), Ciaran Macken for B Clarke (43), James Conlon for Finnegan (53), Joe Cowley for S Clarke (60).

Referee - John O'Byrne (St Patrick's)

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