St. Marys fightback to clinch draw with Rathmore

Danske Bank Loch an Luir Cup 

St. Marys CBGS 3-01-1-07 Rathmore GS 

Kevin Herron reports from Glen Road

St. Marys CBGS and Rathmore played out a thrilling draw in the Loch an Luir Cup opener at St. Mary’s CBGS on Thursday afternoon. 

It was both sides first competitive outing in colleges football- having missed first and second year through the Covid pandemic. 

Rathmore hit the front early-on through back-to-back converted frees from Donnacha McGurk. 

Conall Taggart then slipped the ball to Joe Logan who shimmied and steered the ball over the bar and the corner-forward added another shortly afterwards. 

St. Mary’s failed to make the most of a couple of golden goal opportunities in the opening period and went into the interval trailing by five after Donnacha McGurk produced a splendid, angled point and but for a fine save from Shea Kearns- things could have been much worse for the hosts at the midway point. 

St. Mary’s gave themselves a lifeline after the break when Ryan Donnelly dropped a free into the path of Oisin Boyle who found the net. 

But Donnacha McGurk dropped over his third free of the contest and Thomas Mickleburgh added a goal with a shot that looped over Shea Kearns and into the net to give their side a 1-06-1-00 lead. 

Joe Logan then powered through and shot over the bar to extend his sides lead and give St. Mary’s a huge uphill task. 

It was a challenge that the Glen Road outfit relished as they hit the net for the second time in the half. 

Oisin Gamble sent a pass into substitute Darragh Brown whose knock-down released Ryan Donnelly who fired in a low shot that fortunately deceived Dara Boylan to make it a four-point game with seven minutes remaining. 

Ryan Donnelly rifles home his sides second of the game to reignite hopes of a comeback

A grandstand finish was on the cards with three minutes remaining when Oisin Gamble floated in a high ball which dropped to the net to leave a single score separating the sides. 

The hosts were buoyed and sensed a share of the spoils were on and they pulled level. Oran Stevenson dropped the ball into the path of substitute Ryan Donnelly and the Gort na Mona player swung over an equaliser from an acute angle to make it 3-01-1-07. 

Rathmore had to play out the remaining minutes a man short when Conall Taggart was black-carded, but neither side could find the winning the score as the spoils were shared after an entertaining encounter. 

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