Late revival secures draw

Meath B League Division 2 Round 4

Seneschalstown 1-09 Summerhill 0-12

Despite an indifferent performance over the hour Seneschalstown moved into the top spot of the B League Division 2 following a late rally which earned them a share of the spoils on Thursday evening in Fr. Tully Park. Poor for much of the hour this could be regarded as robbing Summerhill of the victory as the visitors hit fourteen wides in total, seven in each half but Seneschalstown showed good character to keep plugging away and when Shane Clarke was presented with a sixty-sixth-minute chance to equalise from a free he made no mistake.

A feature of Seneschalstown matches in the last week or so has been to concede an early point before almost immediately hitting back with a goal and this pattern continued on Thursday when after Summerhill struck with an opening minute point, Ross Howard embarked on one of his meandering runs, ducking and weaving his way through a forest of bodies before spotting an intelligent Neil Darby run. Darby ran onto his fisted pass and made no mistake as he flicked the ball into the right corner of the goal with his left foot.

Midfielder Paul McDonnell then struck a point when he got on the end of a move he had started and which also involved Shane Clarke and Mark Fox to strike over. Summerhill replied with a point before Ryan O’Dowd opened his account with a free following a foul on Clarke. Another Summerhill point came when they reacted quickest to a free which dropped short before Niall Groome turned on the afterburners to race onto a Stephen Finnegan pass and fist over. Shane Clarke then popped over a free to extend the Seneschalstown lead but Summerhill finished the half strongly as they landed the last three points, all from play to leave just a solitary point between the sides, Seneschalstown 1-04 Summerhill 0-06.

They were quickest to get going in the second half again and added another trio of points before Seneschalstown got their shooting boots on when they hit a brace of frees through Clarke and O’Dowd. Another trio of Summerhill points arrived between the fifty first and fifty seventh minutes to push them three clear approaching the end of the regulation hour.

Ryan O’Dowd chipped away at their lead when he knocked over a free before a few minutes into stoppage time, of which there was plenty following two lengthy spells where Summerhill players received attention, Stephen Finnegan brought the deficit back to a solitary point. Seneschalstown’s tails were now up and when centre back Paul Carey was clipped as he sent a searching delivery into the full forward line, referee Sean Gahan was left with no choice but to award a free from where the ball landed. The angle was incredibly acute but there are few more reliable left footed free takers than Shane Clarke and the experienced centre forward made no mistake as he bisected the uprights to salvage his team a draw.

Best for Seneschalstown were Stephen Finnegan, Colin Walsh and Shane Clarke.

Seneschalstown: Shane Corbally, Ronan Conneely, Conor Cowley, Colin Walsh, Kevin Casey, Paul Carey, Mark Fox, Paul McDonnell (0-01), Stephen Finnegan (0-01, 0-01 Free), Neil Darby (1-00), Shane Clarke (0-03, 0-03 Frees), Ryan O’Dowd (0-03, 0-03 Frees), Ross Howard, Niall Groome (0-01), Aled Ingman.

Seneschalstown Substitutions: Rob Darby for R. Howard, Ciaran Macken for N. Groome, Adam Gargan for A. Ingman, Ruairí Keogh for R. Darby, Darragh Keogh for N. Darby, Cormac Mullen for R. O’Dowd.

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