Rathdowney-Errill 1-22 Camross 3-14
ACHL Division 1A Semi-final
Two points deep into injury time from Dylan Carroll and Paddy Purcell settled this entertaining ACHL Division 1 semi-final at Derrynaseera on Sunday night.
In a highly entertaining and competitive gave, Rathdowney-Errill managed to come out on top despite playing a little over half the game with 14 men, after Joe Fitzpatrick was shown a straight red card before the interval. They resisted the temptation to start their county contingent too, apart from James Ryan, and introduced them in the second half to give them the boost they needed at the time.
Camross will be disappointed to have lost, given they had the numerical advantage and that they took the lead with a minute of normal time left thanks to Andrew Mortimer’s brilliant goal. They just couldn’t hold on though, as Dylan Carroll hit a couple of frees to put Rathdowney-Errill back in front and Paddy Purcell then sealed the win deep into stoppage time.
The game was evenly contested throughout, with the biggest gap between the sides being four points after Camross got their second goal, but that only lasted for two minutes.
Rathdowney-Errill opened the scoring through Brandon McGinley, as he pointed twice either side of efforts from Zane Keenan (free) and Daniel Delaney to see the teams level at 0-2 each after three minutes.
Keenan then added another free before the first goal chance of the game fell to McGinley, but his shot was well saved by Thomas Dunphy. Keenan then put Camross two ahead but Rathdowney-Errill steeled themselves and fought back to level terms by the water break, 0-6 apiece, with Liam O’Connell performing well for them at centre-back.
Dylan Carroll and Darren Gilmartin traded scores on the restart before Camross then had a goal chance, Damien Madden denying Darren Drennan with a good save. Daniel Delaney and Keenan then put Camross two ahead as half-time approached, but Rathdowney-Errill rallied.
A nice team move ended with a point from James Ryan, Dylan Carroll added a free and then Paddy McCane added another to edge them ahead. THings were looking up for them now, but then they lost Joe Fitzpatrick to a red card. The Rathdowney-Errill veteran shipped a heavy blow contesting a puckout, and he lashed out wildly in response, leaving Padraig Dunne with no choice but to issue the red card.
Zane Keenan added another point moments later and that left the teams deadlocked at 0-10 each at the break.
Rathdowney-Errill had to reshuffle their team, moving Thep Fitzpatrick back to defence in place of namesake Joe, and bringing Jack Kelly into midfield. They had an instant impact, with Thep hitting two monster points from wing back inside the opening minute of the half, and Jack Kelly adding another from long range.
All that good work was quickly undone however with a Camross goal. There was a touch of fortune about it too, as Damien Madden did well to get his body in the way of Zane Keenan’s shot, but the ball rebounded kindly to Darren Drennan, who tapped to the net.
Liam O’Connell (free) and Eoin Gaughan swapped points before Camross got another goal, again with a slice of luck involved. Ciaran Collier’s rasping shot was brilliantly saved by Damien Madden, but the ball still managed to trickle towards the line and as Madden tried to clear it, he inadvertently hit it into his own net. Keenan added a free and Camross were four ahead, but Dylan Carroll (free) and Thep Fitzpatrick once more had Rathdowney back to within two at the second water break.
The final quarter was entertaining fare, with Rathdowney-Errill going ahead thanks to a goal from Carroll, as his drilled low to the net after Thomas Dunphy had lost possession for Camross.
Rathdowney were edging their noses and in front and were two ahead with normal time almost up, but Andrew Mortimer came charging through to bury a shot into the bottom corner for Camross.
They held that slender lead as normal time elapsed, but Dylan Carroll showed impressive composure to slot over a couple of frees before he then set Paddy Purcell up for the clincher deep into stoppage time.
SCORERS – Camross: Zane Keenan 0-8 (0-6 frees), Andrew Mortimer 1-0, Darren Drennan 1-0, Daniel Delaney 0-2, Eoin Gaughan 0-2, Darren Gilmartin 0-1, Craig Carroll 0-1, Damien Madden 1-0 (og). Rathdowney-Errill: Dylan Carroll 1-7 (0-7 frees), Thep Fitzpatrick 0-5, Liam O’Connell 0-2 (frees), James Ryan 0-2, Brandon McGinley 0-2, Paddy Purcell 0-2, Jack Kelly 0-1, Paddy McCane 0-1.
CAMROSS: Thomas Dunphy; Martin Burke, Lorcan Burke, Joe Phelan; Andrew Mortimer, Andrew Collier, Dwane Palmer; Gearoid Burke, Darragh Duggan; Daniel Delaney, Eoin Gaughan, Darren Gilmartin; Zane Keenan, Liam Delaney, Darren Drennan. Subs: Ciaran Collier for Gilmartin (38 mins), Oisin Bennett for L Delaney (38 mins), Craig Carroll for Duggan (40 mins), Odhran Phelan for D Delaney (48 mins), David Mortimer for Drennan (52 mins).
RATHDOWNEY-ERRILL: Damien Madden; Jimmy Corrigan, Kevin O’Dea, John Purcell; Joe Fitzpatrick, Liam O’Connell, John Keane; Shane Dollard, Daithi Poynton; James Ryan, Dylan Carroll, Thep Fitzparick; Paddy McCane, Ray Bowe, Brandon McGinley. Subs: Jack Kelly for Dollard (half time), Ross King for Bowe (38 mins), Paddy Purcell for McCane (38 mins).
Referee: Padraig Dunne (Colt)