ACHL Division Four
Lámh Dhearg 0-25-3-03 St Agnes’
Kevin Herron reports from Hannahstown
St Agnes’ breached the league leaders defence three times but were unable to take anything from the game as Lámh Dhearg saw off the Woodlands outfit 0-25-3-03 at Hannahstown on Sunday afternoon.
Lámh Dhearg went ahead early through a Daniel Murray point after Paddy Mervyn’s neat pass- though St Agnes were quickly back on terms through a Kevin Grieves score from Mark Caldwell’s neat flick.
Ryan Diamond then flicked the ball on for corner-forward Ronan Fegan who stroked over to restore his sides lead, but it was short lived as the Aggies replied again through Ronan Carroll.
A converted Daniel Murray free had the Lámhs noses in front again and this time they would begin to build on it- with Fionn Mervyn driving over a lovely score in the aftermath.
Murray converted two further frees and added his second point from play in-between to give his side a 0-07-0-02 advantage at the games first water break.
The hosts advantage was stretched further through points from Cormac Hannan and Niall McGarry and Sean-Paul Gibson – following a neat Declan Straney pass.
It was nine scores in on the trot for the Lámhs following a converted 65’ through Daniel Murray and the free scoring wing-half forward added another to his reel for the afternoon from play.
A moment of confusion then led to St Agnes’ finding a lifeline when referee Francis Caldwell blew his whistle in the aftermath of Paddy Mervyn getting to the ball ahead of Mark Caldwell, Ronan Carroll floated a high ball into the area and the Lámhs full-back line stopped expecting a decision – it didn’t come from the referee and St Agnes’ took full advantage with Conor McLean lashing to the net to make it 0-12-1-02.
Ronan Carroll converted a free in the aftermath and just before the break Niall McGarry popped the ball off to cousin Fionn Mervyn who pointed for his second of the afternoon to give his side a seven-point lead at the interval.
Lámh Dhearg extended their advantage after the restart through Niall McGarry before both sides were reduced to 14-men following the dismissal of Stephen McIlhatton and Cormac Hannan.
St Agnes’ found themselves a second lifeline when Mark Caldwell saw his run halted and Kevin Grieves close range free was converted to the net.
Daniel Murray would reply at the other end with his fourth free of the afternoon with Sean-Paul Gibson claiming his second point of the afternoon from Fionn Mervyn’s layoff shortly after and Mervyn himself powering over his third of the afternoon.
The hosts held an eight-point advantage but that was cut by three when they conceded another close range free and Kevin Grieves shot proved too hot to handle as his low drive made it 0-17-3-03 and St Agnes’ were still very much in proceedings.
Paddy Mervyn would convert a free from half-way to respond instantly and Fionn Mervyn followed up with his fourth from play after a neat interchange between Sean-Paul Gibson and Declan Straney whose pass set-up the point.
Paddy Mervyn flicked the ball into the path of younger cousin Niall McGarry- who momentarily lost his foot- but was able to steer his shot over the bar for his third of the afternoon to re-establish his sides eight-point advantage.
Daniel Murray would convert back-to-back 65’s to bring his tally to three for the game and Sean-Paul Gibson did likewise with a delightful, angled point.
Lámh Dhearg would stretch their lead further and make it eight scores on the spin by the conclusion with Paddy Mervyn landing a score from range and Niall McGarry adding a further point to his personal tally as his side ran out 0-25-3-03 winners in the end.
Lámh Dhearg: F Dugan, C Nolan, M Lynch, T McKenna, P Fitzsimons, P Mervyn (0-02, 0-01f), R Diamond, M Hamill, SP Gibson (0-03), F Mervyn (0-04), D Straney, D Murray (0-10, 0-04f, 0-03 65’), R Fegan (0-01), C Hannan (0-01), N McGarry (0-04).
St Agnes’: C Fay, N Gillespie, J Morgan, S Quirk, S McIlhatton, B McLarnon, A O’Rourke, M Carlin, C McLean (1-00), A McQuillan, A Mulvenna, G McCann, K Grieve (2-01,2-00f), R Carroll (0-02f), M Caldwell. Subs: B Carlin for M Carlin (39), S McIlhatton for S Quirk (39).
Referee: Francis Caldwell (Ballycran)