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Arles-Killeen 3-10 Portarlington 1-16
Laois Shopping Centre Senior Football Championship Round 1
Arles-Killeen played the last 20 minutes with 14 men but somehow managed to salvage a draw against Portarlington in O’Moore Park.
It was Killeen’s ability to get goals which saved them in the end – that and a very late Jason Enright free.
We had to wait well into the third minute for the game’s first point which arrived for Portarlington from a Colm Murphy free.
They then had a great goal chance when David Murphy and Johnny Fulham combined but the latter fired over the bar.
Killeen were finding it tough going early on and David Murphy fired over a third Portarlington point.
But Killeen replied with a goal from their first meaningful attack in the sevent minute. Paul Kingston found brother Donie on the edge of the square and he drew two defenders before picking out Jason Enright who blasted to the net.
Portarlington brought an enjoyable opening ten minutes to a close with a second point for Colm Murphy and his brother David soon extended their lead out to two after a great ball by Paddy O’Sullivan who was picking up Donie Kingston.
David Murphy brought his tally to four with a brace soon after to move Portarlington 0-7 to 1-0 ahead by the midpoint of the half.
Both sides then missed golden goal opportunities. First, Jason Moore shot straight at Mick Leigh when a simple pass to Evan Lyons was on.
Then, Killeen were denied twice in a minute. Paul Kingston saw his shot blocked by Robbie Piggott with keeper Brian McAuley beaten. A minute later, brother Donie struck the inside of the post.
Colm Murphy kicked an eight point for Portarlington but Killeen had a second goal in the 18th minute. Donie Kingston beat Paddy O’Sullivan in the air and laid the ball off to Donie Brennan who slotted it beneath keeper McAuley.
Donie Kingston then landed a brace to level the game before Jason Enright gave them the lead for the first time.
Evan Lyons tied it up with five minutes of the first half to play and it remained level after Jason Enright and Lyons swapped points – 0-10 to 2-4 at half time.
Portarlington regained the lead 30 seconds after the restart when Robbie Piggott, who was marking Paul Kingston, came up to score from distance.
David Murphy extended it but Donie Kingston reduced the deficit to the minimum after he ended a run forward with a point.
Arles-Killeen were then dealt a massive blow in the 37th minute when they were reduced to 14 men after Shane Julian received a second yellow card for a high tackle on Colm Murphy.
He pointed from the resulting free and Portarlington had a goal a minute later. Eoin McCann surged forward and popped off the ball to Steven Lyons who shot low to the bottom corner.
Jason Enright reduced the gap to four with a free but Evan Lyons hit straight back for Portarlington in the 42nd minute.
However, Killeen’s third goal was just around the corner. One long ball unlocked the Portarlington defence and Paul Kingston rounded keeper Brian McAuley before scoring.
But Portarlington didn’t drop their heads and Steven Lyons scored from distance to leave three between them with a quarter of the game to go.
Donie Kingston kicked his fourth of the game and followed that with a fifth from a free to make it a one point game once more.
And we were level with five minutes to go when Jason Enright kicked a free after Paul Kingston was fouled.
But, picked out as our one to watch during the week, Jake Foster scored from a ridiculously tight angle to give Portarlington the lead in the first minute of injury time.
Nevertheless, there was still time for Killeen to get level and when Paul Kingston was fouled by Robbie Piggott, Jason Enright levelled the game again.
Portarlington did have a late chance to win it when Jake Foster’s shot was deflected out for a 45 but keeper Brian McAuley’s effort dropped short and the full time whistle blew.
There was angry scenes at full time as both sides engaged in some pushing and shoving but they will have to do battle all over again soon.
SCORERS – ARLES-KILLEEN: Donie Kingston 0-5 (0-1 free), Jason Enright 1-5 (0-2 frees), Donie Brennan and Paul Kingston 1-0 each PORTARLINGTON: Colm Murphy 0-4 (0-2 frees), Steven Lyons 1-1, Johnny Fulham 0-1, David Murphy 0-5, Evan Lyons 0-3 (0-1 frees), Robbie Piggott 0-1, Jake Foster 0-1
ARLES-KILLEEN: Mick Leigh; Joe Mulhare, James Mahon, Niall O’Rourke; John Mahon, Enda O’Rourke, Cathal Moran-O’Brien; Shane Julian, Donie Kingston; Joe Mahon, Seán O’Shea, Jason Enright; Conor Keightley, Donie Brennan, Seán O’Shea. Subs: Shane Byrne for Joe Mahon (46mins), Enda McDonald for John Mahon (50mins), John Mahon for McDonald (55mins)
PORTARLINGTON: Brian McAuley; Diarmuid Bennett, Hayden Weldon, Robbie Piggott; Paddy O’Sullivan, Cathal Ryan, Dean Foster; Johnny Fulham, Eoin McCann; Jason Moore, David Murphy, Steven Lyons; Evan Lyons, Colm Murphy, Graham Weldon. Subs: Jake Foster for Ryan (ht)
Referee: Seamus Mulhare (The HEath