Christmas Cracker Awaits in Dunganny

Under 20 ‘A’ Football Championship Semi-Final

Seneschalstown 2-08 St. Peter’s Dunboyne 1-07

Seneschalstown qualified for a first U21/U20 final since 2012 by digging deep to overcome the stiff challenge of St. Peter’s Dunboyne on Tuesday night. Conditions were not far off ideal, with no wind or rain and the temperature relatively mild for this time of year. The win sees Seneschalstown renew acquaintances with Senior Champions Wolfe Tones in Friday night's showpiece.

Prior to throw-in, a minute’s silence was held for the late Pat Carey, a stalwart of the Seneschalstown club over many years who also led Ballivor to Intermediate Championship success in 2002.

Seneschalstown flew out of the traps with Joey Moore pointing inside 20 seconds for the home side. Dunboyne were quickly level with a pointed free from All-Ireland Minor winner Jack Kinlough. The opening quarter thereafter was tight with both teams trying to feel their way into the game, coupled with plenty of handling errors as the greasy ball was hard to control. On 15 minutes, and just as Stephen Dawson was about to call for the water break, Dunboyne were given a massive boost when a speculative shot from the sideline on the dugout side of the pitch squirmed into the Seneschalstown net.

After a quick chat with manager Declan Byrne, the hosts responded positively. Sean commons converted his first free of the evening, before he stepped up to convert a placed ball from just outside the 45. This effort made all the more impressive given that he kicked it from the ground. Another Dunboyne white restored their two point lead, but Seneschalstown made a late burst to ensure they went into the interval with parity restored. On 28 minutes, Donie Commons had the simple task of tapping over a close range free, before the score of the half closed out the scoring for the home side. Simon Rooney intercepted a loose pass on the edge of his ‘D’, and Seneschalstown transitioned the ball up the pitch through the hands of Rooney and Cathal Hickey. Joey Moore took aim from way out and the ball accurately landed between the posts to leave the scoreboard in the corner reading 1-02 to 0-05 at the break.

The visitors were first to threaten the scoreboard in the second half when they pointed a free playing away from the clubhouse end of the pitch, but Seneschalstown would shortly gain control of the tie and move ahead for the first time since the early stages of the game.

The ball made it’s way through the hands of Seanie Dalton and Cathal Hickey. Hickey found Joey Moore who looked as if he would return the ball the Meath Senior Footballer, but he spotted Donie Commons unmarked across the square. The ball was played into the path of the younger Commons brother who made no mistake firing the ball low to the net with his left foot. Dunboyne again reduced the gap to the minimum with another point of their own, however Seneschalstown were about to put a massive dent in their visitors’ hopes of a comeback with a quickfire 1-01 before the water break. Substitute Owen Mullen was barely on the pitch when he linked up with Joey Moore in the Seneschalstown inside line. Mullen took aim for goal and despite a relatively tame effort, the ball managed to evade the Dunboyne net minder and nestle in the corner of the net. Donie Commons hoisted over a point in the very next attack as the hosts led by five points at the end of the third quarter.

The up and down nature of the game continued as Dunboyne were unfortunate not to hit a goal of their own when the ball rebounded off the butt of the post and away to safety, but they did follow up with two points in the next few minutes to make matters nervy for those on the home sideline. Seneschalstown were not helped by a black card for a tackle which certainly would have looked the part during Ireland’s recent November Series in the Aviva. Some good defending in particular from Cormac Carolan and Simon Rooney, ensured Dunboyne never got within the three point margin, and the home side were able to get up the pitch with a fine move ending with Cathal Hickey popping up in a good scoring position to easy the nerves. Dunboyne got it back to three when trying to engineer a goal, and one final attack was thwarted by the home defennce which resulted in Simon Rooney and Owen Mullen leading a counter attack, with everyone bar themselves, one defender and goalkeeper in the Dunboyne half. The keeper advanced to narrow the angle, but Rooney went around him and the ball ended up over the bar, booking Seneschalstown’s place in the final on Friday night against Wolfe Tones in Dunganny.

This was a good second half performance from Seneschalstown, but know that Micheal McDermott will have the Gibbstown/Kilberry youngsters well drilled. Throw-in at the Meath Centre of Excellence is at 7:30pm so make sure you get out to support the lads and bring Christmas cheer to the club for 2021.

Seneschalstown: Cathal Darby, Cormac Carolan, Simon Rooney (0-01), Woodley Nicholson, Conor McDonnell, Cathal Hickey (0-01), Cillian Lawlor, Sean Commons (0-02, 2fs), Podge Finegan, Seanie Dalton, Joey Moore (0-02), Jamie Kirwan, Ross Mullen, Donie Commons (1-02, 1f), Liam Maguire.

Subs Used: Will Finnegan, Owen Mullen (1-00), Tom McDonnell

Theme by Danetsoft and Danang Probo Sayekti inspired by Maksimer