O’Neill goal sends Cargin into minor final

All-County Minor Football Championship semi-final

St Galls 0-10-1-10 Cargin

From Kevin Herron at Hannahstown

Photographs: Bert Trowlen

Sean O’Neill’s early second-half goal was enough to see Cargin edge into the all-county minor football final after a 1-10-0-10 win over St Galls at Hannahstown this afternoon.

The Toome side were in control for the majority of the contest with influential midfielder Pat Shivers landing 0-06 in a commanding first-half display.

St Galls relied heavily upon Niall Burns and the corner-forward’s 0-08 kept his side in contention until the death, but ultimately O’Neill’s  major decided proceedings and sets up a decider against St Brigids on October 6th.

It was Cargin who hit the front early on through a converted 45’ from Pat Shivers but Niall Burns (free) hit back after a foul on Odhran McDonald.

Burns edged his side ahead after Dara Delaney’s switch to Oisin Crawford put the Milltown men on the front foot, Crawford sent a long ball into the danger area where Burns was felled, but converted the resulting free.

A marvellous Shivers point on the turn had the sides level at 0-02 apiece after 11 minutes and three further unanswered scores had Cargin in control with less than ten minutes to the break.

A goal may also have been on the cards for the Toome side after Odhran Molloy’s short shot was spilt by St Galls keeper Louis McCormick, however he recovered before Orrin Johnson could try to take advantage.

Pat Shivers kicked two magnificent frees to give his side a two-point advantage and Eunan Quinn combined with Padraic McLaughlin who popped the ball over to make it 0-05-0-02.

A third converted Niall Burns free closed the gap in the aftermath though Cargin added three further points to take a commanding lead at the interval.

McLaughlin doubled his account after a smart interchange with Odhran Molloy and midfielder Shivers brought to tally to 0-06 at the break with a fourth converted free and a second point from play that went over with a little help from the large post to give his side a 0-08-0-03 lead at the break.

St Galls opened the second half scoring through a converted Burns free and substitute Caolan McKee almost found the opening goal in the aftermath, minutes after replacing Joe Gibson; McKee was inches away with a low shot that whistled inches past Shea Laverty’s near post.

Burns would claim his first score from play as his free came off the large upright and Niall Fallon ensured the loose ball was switched back into the path of the corner-forward whose shot landed over the bar to put three between the sides (0-08-0-05).

The games opening goal arrived seven minutes into the second-half and it was Cargin who claimed it. Pat Shivers wasn’t able to get a shot off and his high ball was claimed by centre half-back Sean O’Neill who rifled low to the net on the turn to give his side a 1-08-0-05 lead.

St Galls responded through three converted frees – Burns brought his tally to 0-07 with a further two conversions before first-half substitute Paul McLoughlin landed a magnificent free from distance to ensure the goal separated the sides.

Pat Shivers almost claimed his sides second goal between times; but after contesting a high ball with St Galls keeper Louis McCormick the ball fell short of the net and was scrambled clear by the Milltown men.

Cargin were without a score since O’Neill’s 37th minute strike but went four points ahead through Jack McAllister’s point – with O’Neill playing the providers role.

Corner-forward Padraic McLaughlin almost sealed victory after a marauding run forward that ended with his low shot crashing off the base of the post.

At the other end a high ball from St Galls substitute Ronan Crossen evaded Niall Burns in a promising position.

Odhran McDonald conjured up a fine point and Niall Burns eight point of the game closed the deficit to two (0-10-1-09) with time fast running out.

Although the Milltown side couldn’t make further inroads and Padraic McLaughlin came in off the angle and scored his third of the afternoon to ensure his side would contest the minor decider with St Brigids on October 6th – emerging victorious 1-10-0-10.

St Galls: L McCormick, D Wilson, E Burke, J Gibson, F Donnelly, O Crawford, C Maguire, K Cruikshank, D Churchill, D Delaney, N McAreavey, C McCabe, O McDonald (0-01), M McCaffrey, N Burns (0-08, 0-07f). Subs: P McLoughlin (0-01f) for M McCaffrey (25); C McKee for J Gibson (32); N Fallon for N McAreavey (32); R Crossen for C McCabe (35); P Smith for M McCaffrey (50 – black card substitution).

Cargin: S Laverty, C Johnston, S Og Quinn, C Donnelly, M Johnson, S O’Neill (1-00), C Kennedy, O Molloy, P Shivers (0-06, 0-03f, 0-01 45’) J McAllister (0-01), O Johnston, S McAuley, PJ Quinn, E Quinn, P McLaughlin (0-03). Subs: B Kelly for O Johnston (43).

Referee: Paul Hughes (O’Donnells).

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