by Geordie McGuckin
All County Football League Division One (Round 7)
Erin’s Own Cargin 2-17 O’ Donovan Rossa 0-09
Another mid-week setting as Rossa paid their annual visit to Toome and onto the pristine sod on the Shore Road arena for round seven of the All County division one league.
The home side did start the game as firm favourites and seeking a return to the winning trail after being held to a draw at Corrigan on their previous outing.
Shaw’s road based Rossa had proved quite enigmatic in their offerings thus far in the league and having endured a last gasp defeat to the visiting Ahoghill last time they travelled to the country seeking better if they had any ambitions on a top six place at the cut off.
In the event the Belfast men were to prove unsuccessful in their quest as the men from the lough shore returned to winning ways with a 2-17 to 0-09 victory.
Having been held to a draw in their previous outing Cargin were in no mood to dally on such setback as they blasted out of the start traps and after Gerard Mc Cann rose highest to claim the throw in the ball was quickly transferred through the hands of Kevin Mc Shane, Michael Mc Cann, and Tomas Mc Cann en route to Paul Mc Cann to finish to the net.
Rossa did stay in contact with their hosts for a term and after James Connolly delivered a couple of excellent points in reply the Shaw’s road men were off and running. Cargin came back with a couple of fine scores as John Carron and Tony Scullion raised white flags apiece, and after goal scorer Paul Mc Cann delivered another, Stephen Beatty replied in kind for the visitors.
That opening first minute major was all that separated the sides as game progressed into the second quarter, but the home side were getting into stride and with Gerard Mc Cann and Kevin Mc Shane proving influential in the central zone they were proving dominant.
A Justin Crozier intervention paved the way for a Enda Mc Grogan 19th minute point and when Tomas Mc Cann clipped a 30 metre free firmly between the posts a couple of minutes later to punish an indiscretion on Ciaran Bradley the home side were 1-05 to 0-03 to the good.
Rossa were always threatening but the Cargin rear-guard were standing tall with young Gerard Mc Corley making a couple of eye catching interventions and the veteran Tony Scullion always looking to come off the shoulder to supply the front men, the county champions were making most of the running.
A Scullion, Mc Shane combination sent Michael in for a 25th minute point to increase advantage but the resulting kick out saw Stephen Beatty claim mark before sending the impressive Gerard Walsh in to raise white at the other end.
A fine score from the strong running midfielder but time remained for the home side to make reply and indeed Cargin were to have the final say as Justin Crozier’s drive forward opened the way for Tomas Mc Cann to despatch between the posts and ensure the Toome men held a 1-07 to 0-04 interval lead.
The second period saw the Rossa men drive forward right from the outset and it took an excellent save from the home side’s net minder as John Mc Nabb did well to thwart the firm intentions of Sean Pat Donnelly as the lively wing half forward sought goal.
A firm intervention from the home side’s keeper and after Tomas Mc Cann added a point at the other end a minute later further salt was rubbed into the Rossa wounds as Michael Mc Cann blasted a penalty into the back of the net.
A fluid movement which had involved several in the inception saw the centre forward grounded in the act of pulling the trigger and when the man in charge pointed to the spot he sought retribution himself finding the corner in stylish delivery and Cargin were at 2-08 to 0-04 clear.
Rossa really needed reply if they were to salvage anyhing from the game, but the Erin’s Own men were in positive motion and further points provided by the ever accurate Tomas Mc Cann saw them advance to a thirteen point lead by the end of the third quarter.
James Connolly did grab a point back for the city men but Cargin were not about to rest on their laurels as central defender Justin Crozier moved forward to split the posts and Michael Mc Cann followed with another.
The die was indeed well cast but the gallant Rossa were not about make concession and indeed the introduction of replacements Chris Mc Vicar and Donal Armstrong was aiding the cause.
The home side had advanced well into the calm waters of safety and a further Michael Mc Cann point followed.
The Rossa men still refused to yield to what was obviously beyond them as they pushed forward and the Cargin keeper was once more asked question as Donal Armstrong sent Gerard Walsh in on target with a goal on his mind.
The home side’s net custodian stood tall in defiance again to turn the leather around his post at the cost of a ‘45’ which was sent over the bar by Walsh as consolation.
The end was well in sight as the Cargin management looked to the bench and indeed the Rossa men were still focused on scores despite the obvious futility.
The ever impressive Gerard Walsh did add a couple of points to the Rossa cause but as he rain arrived to dampen proceedings the home side finished with a flourish as a trio of white flags raised by Enda Mc Grogan, Paul Mc Cann, and Michael Mc Cann saw them breast the line at 2-17 to 0-09.
John Mc Nabb, Gerard Mc Corley, Donnach Mc Keever, Tony Scullion (0-01, David Johnston, Justin Crozier (0-01), Kevin O’ Boyle, Gerard Mc Cann, John Carron (0-01), Paul Mc Cann (1-02), Michael Mc Cann (1-04), Kevin Mc Shane, Enda Mc Grogan (0-02), Tomas Mc Cann (0-06), Ciaran Bradley.
Michael Clarke for C Bradley
Benny Laverty for Donnach Mc Keever
David Mc Elhone for David Johnston
Kyle Johnston for J Carron
Caolan Walsh, Jack Morris, Conor McGowan, Aidan Orchin, Richard Gowdy, Eoin O’ Neill, James Cooley, Gerard Walsh (0-03), Stephen Beatty (0-01), Stephen Finch, James Connolly (0-04), S P Donnelly, Niall Crossan, Darren Grego, Terry Mc Grath.
Donal Armstrong for A Orchin
Chris Boyle for S P Donnelly
Chris Mc Vicar for S Finch
Referee Vincent Boyle (Cuchullian’s)