The Belfry SFC SF Coolera/Strandhill 2-14 v St.Marys 0-16


The game started at breakneck speed with points from Stephen Coen and Niall Murphy and continued at this pace for the next hour. It was a game where there was spills, hard tackles , great scores and fellas putting their heads where it was barely safe. Peter Laffey unfortunately had to be stretchered off after going down when throwing a dummy and his knee appeared to go from under him. This happened in the fifth minute and he received a warm applause when being stretchered off. We wish him a speedy recovery. 

Karol O'Neill replaced Laffey and he had a point on the board after 18 minutes to draw the teams level at 4 with other scores from Kyle Cawley, Mark Breheny and Murphy with points from Coolera. Marys had also messed up or was it great Coolera defending two great goal chances. In the second case an excellent run by Tony O'Kelly Lynch saw each of the Marys full forwards line have a stab at it but a combination of crossbar, keeper Harte, Sean Murphy, Gary Cawley and McDonagh saw Harte nearly take the head off Murphy when clearing the ball on the fourth attempt. It was to be the start of Harte having the game of his life. Two points from Luke Nicholson and Nathan Rooney put Marys in front but in injury time Murphy drove a ball across the goals on the skiddy ground which beat the defender and keeper and was sidefooted into the net by Adam Higgins. The pass was excellent and having being preceded by a Murphy score leaving Coolera in front by 4 at the break 1-7 v 0-6

Marys came out in great form at the start of the half and points from Cawley, Breheny and Coen all from play showed that they were willing to fight for this. In the 6th minute of the half a pass which was overhit was caught one handed by Murphy inside the full back line. Despite the keeper holding him up , after two dummies Murphy drove to the corner of the net. Marys did not panic but their cause was not helped by Murphy and Barry O'Mahoney adding two more points directly after the goal. With 15 minutes to go Paul Kilcoyne drove over the bar but at this point Harte had made two excellent saves with his feet. A number of last ditch tackles by the Coolera defence kept their lead and they broke for two points from Higgins and Kevin Banks who had an immense second half and managed to score 2 more points in those final minutes playing a real captains role with an excellent catch under the crossbar in injury time also. Karol O'Neill scored his second point before hobbling off. Despite Breheny and Coen scoring late points Coolera were not to be denied. 

Goals win games and Coolera only got two and scored them whilst Marys spurned 7 or 8 of those chances. Spurned is probably unfair as man of the match Keelan Harte in the goals was outstanding with excellent saves. It was well desereved for Harte and the Coolera defence to keep the clean sheet and they will now look forward to the county final on October 20 with a sense of anticipation and the knowledge that if all put their mind to it, it is possible to do it. It is hard to believe that 4 weeks ago they made the quarter finals and avoided the relegation final with 2 points in injury time to defeat Drumcliffe by a point. 

Scorers
Coolera/Strandhill - Niall Murphy 1-7 (5f) , Adam Higgins 1-1, Kevin Banks 0-3, Karol O'Neill 0-2, Barry O'Mahoney 0-1

Marys - Mark Breheny 0-6 (3f), Stephen Coen, Kyle Cawley 0-3 each, Nathan Rooney, Lule Nicholson, Paul Kilcoyne 0-1 each     (One Marys point that Harte diverted over bar - not certain of scorer)


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