Laragh United and Bailieboro Shamrocks locked horns in Duke Park Stradone last Sunday and in a seesaw affair throughout, most of the large crowd in attendance concurred that indeed a draw was a fair result. To be fair the visitors looked the sharper early on and opened the scoring with a close tap in free by Michael Argue after 2 minutes. This was followed by a superb right footed point from Senan O’Reilly after some excellent work from Paul O’Reilly on the forty. And Bailieboro wrapped up a hat trick of early scores with the right peg of Damien Reilly.
After 10 minutes the balance of power shifted and Laragh United took control of proceedings, firstly and unluckily for Utd a great run by Patrick Rudden and lay off to Gerry Murray saw a tame shot easily saved by Jeffrey Martin. This was very much a sign of things to come with Rudden and Murray carrying the fight to Bailileboro for the remainder of the match. Rudden latched over 2 free’s to close the margin on the visitors. Then a long ranging ball lamped in by Laragh veteran Colin Oates was superbly fielded by Gerry Murray who flashed his pass to Patrick Rudden who rocketed the ball to the roof of the net, a bullet goal after a fine passage of play. Cian O’Rourke increased Utd’s lead with the first Laragh point from play after 18 minutes. Not to be outdone Declan O’Reilly eased some pressure with a left footed point for the Shamrocks to stem the Laragh flow.
Another battle simmering on the edge of the Laragh small square was between the two 2011 Ulster Minor medallists i.e. Michael Argue and Shane O’Rourke. To be fair the Laragh defender had the better of the tussle but a slip let Argue through one on one but Martin Smith parried his shot and Argue hit the rebound wide with an open goal gaping. This would prove crucial and a super hand passing movement down the field including Gerry Murray, Cian O’Rourke, Declan King, Liam Brady let Ruari Power through on goal and he unselfishly squared the ball to the onrushing Conal Donohoe who fisted the ball to the net. An excellent team goal by the men in orange and white. Patrick Rudden stretched the lead further with an outrageous point from an acute angle. The two Bailieboro midfielders who were impressive through-out kept the fight going and scored a point a piece the first from Declan O’Reilly and the second a great solo effort by Peter Clerkin.
Half Time score: Laragh United 2-04 to Bailieboro Shamrocks 0-6
The half time cup of tea had barely settled when Conor Tierney swung over a beauty with his left foot and again powerful midfielder O’Reilly pointed to make further inroads into the Laragh lead. A 30 metre free from Rudden left Laragh noses ahead but Bailieboro looked the hungrier after the break. A great catch under pressure and run by Gerry Murray left it easy for Rudden to point another score. Argue notched up another point for the visitors but one of the scores of the match was from wing back Tierney who looped another fine Bailieboro score with 15 minutes gone in the second half. Not to be outdone Murray scored an equally good score with his right foot to keep his side 3 points ahead. Michael Argue who was now at midfield scored another point from a free. Paul O’Reilly who was battling hard all day with Laragh captain Seamus Cooney for once broke completely free and crashed in a goal for the Shamrocks who now looked the more assured side. This was also helped by the dismissal of Laragh United’s Patrick King for a double yellow card offense. Rudden again put a point on the board after a free won by Cian O’Rourke to put the sides level. The play at this stage was from end to end and both defences working hard to keep scores out. However in the dying second Declan O’Reilly looked to have won the game for Bailieboro after he pointed after again more good work from Tierney. Cometh hour cometh the man as on the stroke of full time after Ruairi Power was fouled and with 60 mins on the clock Patrick Rudden levelled the match from the free from a difficult angle. The full time whistle blew and all punters went home happy with a point well earned.
Full Time score: Laragh United 2-09 to Bailieboro Shamrocks 1-12.
Laragh United: M. Smith, P. King, S. O’Rourke, K. Donohoe, D. King, S. Cooney, L. Brady, C. Oates, D. Brady, E. Cullivan, P. Rudden (1-7), C. O’Rourke (0-1), G. Murray (0-1), R. Power, C. Donohoe (1-0).
Bailieboro Shamrock: J. Martin, D. Lynch, L. Moynagh, C. Daly, S. Dillon, N. Comey, C. Tierney (0-2), D. O’Reilly (0-3), P. Clerkin (0-1), S. O’Reilly (0-1), P. O’Reilly (1-0), O. O’Sullivan, D. O’Reilly (0-2), M. Argue (0-3), P. Clarke.
Referee: Harry ConatyReserve Match: Laragh United 2-06 to Bailieboro Shamrocks 0-14
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