Surging St. Farnan's comeback secures turnaround win

Back 03/07/2023 @ 17:00 | mainnews | Surging St. Farnan's comeback secures turnaround win

Shamrock Gaels 1-12 St. Farnan’s 0-17

With both sides welcoming back players from county duty, the visit of St Farnans to Coola offered the prospect of an entertaining evening from two clubs long associated with attacking football.

It didn’t quite turn out that way and although their respective county players had a significant impact on the game, it was mostly in the accurate conversion of frees by David Quinn and Paddy O’Connor in a game that never had any flow to it.

The visitors in the end took the spoils and the valuable three points that now applies for league games from this stage on in the competition after coming from six behind to take the spoils back to west Sligo.

The home side had the better start and opened the scoring with the game’s first point free from the talismanic Quinn.

The hard-working Tomas Cawley replied with a point from play before Shane Deignan found the net for Shamrock Gaels with a well worked goal from their kickout.

Finnian Cawley and Quinn traded a point each before Fionn Connolly replaced James Golden as a blood substitute for St. Farnan's. 

The home side were still in the ascendancy and might have had a second Deignan but the shot was deflected for a 45" which was duly converted by Quinn.

A further Quinn point gave his side a strong lead, 1-5 to 0-2 going into the second which reflected St. Farnan's struggle to cope with the movement of the Shamrock Gaels forward line who were supplemented by Dillon Mc Dermott and Ciaran Kenny adding to their forwards’ efforts.

As the game rolled past the 20-minute mark however, the visitors did begin to get a foothold with three unanswered points from Patrick O’Connor, Finnian Cawley and Mattie Lang to reduce the deficit to a goal.

Shamrock Gaels replied with two consecutive points to again increase their lead but points from Thomas Cawley and a brace from O'Connor finished out the half for St. Farnan's to leave the half time score at 1-7 to 0-8 in favour of the Gaels.

After the break Shamrock Gaels looked to pick up the momentum but Sligo U20 midfielder Conor Sheridan had an early goal chance blocked.

It was all going the way of the home side though and despite a number of changes in personnel by the St Farnan’s, including the introduction of Eamonn Kilgannon who has been studying abroad, the Gaels continued to add to their total with three Quinn points from frees and Deignan adding one from play to leave the score at 1-12 to 0-9 halfway through the second half.

From there though, the momentum swing as St. Farnan's showed the strength of their attack to finish strongly.  O'Connor and the Cawley brothers Finnian and Tomas aided by substitute Fionn Connolly gained the upper hand and reduced the deficit to two points.

Although St. Farnan's lost the returning Kilgannon to injury his teammates sensed that there was more to get and when Martin Mulligan fisted a point to reduce the deficit to a single point it was anyone’s game.

The equaliser followed from an O’Connor free for a foul on Finnian Cawley and he repeated the act after James Golden was fouled to give his side the lead for the first time as the game ticked into added time.

Shamrock Gaels had a chance to equalise, but the shot was sent wide and the last word of the day was a fourth point of the evening for Tomas Cawley to give St. Farnan's a victory that would have seemed unlikely for much of the evening but was well-earned in the end.

Shamrock Gaels: Adam Kearns; Shane Barry, Evan Lyons, Ben Tuohy; Ciarán O' Connell, Liam O' Connell, Ciarán Kenny (0-1); Paul Higgins, Dillon McDermott; Conor Sheridan, Stephen Willis, Conor Mc Morrow; Shane Deignan(1-1), Dylan Willis(0-1), David Quinn (0-9(7f, 45').

Subs used: Oisín Conlon,  Darragh Hailstones,  Johnny Quinn.

St. Farnan's: Simon Mullarkey; Conor Gordon, Trevor Kilgannon, Ronan Molloy; Shane O'Brien, Ciarán O'Connor, Shane Molloy; Martin Mulligan (0-1), Kevin Mc Gee;  Finnian Cawley (0-2), Patrick O'Connor (0-9(8f), Mattie Lang; Thomas Cawley (0-4,1m), James Golden, Stephen Mulligan. 

Subs used: Niall Hallinan, Fionn Connolly,  Eamonn Kilgannon,  Mark Devaney. 


Referee: Keith Henry