Home Gaelic Football Club Football Connolly and Delaney lead the way Park-Ratheniska defeat Naomh Eoin to keep...

Connolly and Delaney lead the way Park-Ratheniska defeat Naomh Eoin to keep 2021 run going

Park-Ratheniska 2021

Park-Ratheniska 1-16 Naomh Eoin (Carlow) 1-3 
Leinster Intermediate Football Championship Round 1 

Park-Ratheniska are through to the quarter finals of the Leinster Intermediate Football Championship following a routine win over Naomh Eoin in Dr Cullen Park.

The Myshall outfit rarely troubled Kieran Kelly’s charges as the sharpshooting of the impressive James Connolly and Kieran Delaney led the way.

They won by 13 points in the end and now host Clongeen of Wexford in the quarter final in two weeks time.

There was also a debut for former St Pat’s of Wicklow footballer Jem Kavanagh who replaced the absent Mark Delaney at full back where he gave the type of display that suggests he will prove a hugue asset to the team going forward.

Naomh Eoin flew out of the traps and took the lead in the opening minute through Keith Hogan. But they would lose three players through injury after that and fail to score for the remainder of the half.

Park-Ratheniska almost gave the perfect response when Sean Tynan released Richie Hitchock through on goal but Andy O’Brien made a great save with his foot.

A brace of Kieran Delaney points soon gave Park the lead but they were thankful to a wonderful block from Josh Mulhall which stopped a goalbound Anthony Hogan effort.

Park-Ratheniska had another goal chance in the 13th minute when Marc Ramsbottom turned provider for Sean Tynan but he fired his effort wide.

Neither team scored after that as Park led 0-2 to 0-1 at the water break.

Delaney and a James Connolly mark extended their advantage when play resumed – with Connolly pointing a free after 25 minutes.

Naomh Eoin were unravelling at this stage and their caused was not helped just before half time when keeper Andy O’Brien was shown a black card for dissent after referee Anthony Nolan adjudged that he had taken an illegal kick-out – something the stopper did not agree with.

Kieran Delaney kicked a point after that as Park-Ratheniska led 0-6 to 0-1 at half time.

Just as they did in the first half, Naomh Eoin scored first to end their almost 30 minute scoring drought via Cathal Treacy.

But James Connolly settled Park again with a mark, a free and one from play to leave them seven points ahead after 40 minutes.

Park-Ratheniska then created another goal chance when Marc Ramsbottom broke in along the endline but shot low into the side-netting.

But Ramsbottom would be involved again minutes later as he was fouled by keeper Andy O’Brien for a penalty.

Kieran Delaney sent him the wrong way from the spot but his shot went over the bar to leave Park-Ratheniska 0-10 to 0-2 ahead at the second water break.

Naomh Eoin were then awarded a penalty when play resumed as Richie Hitchcock was adjudged to have tripped his man.

Anthony Hogan sent Jamie Downey the wrong way but unlike Delaney, his shot flew to the net and the gap was back to five.

James Connolly’s sixth point regained composure for the Laois men and they had an extra man for the final ten minutes when James O’Hara was dismissed for two yellow cards after late hits of Colm Brennan and Richie Hitchcock in quick succession.

Kieran Delaney landed his sixth point of the day and Mark G Delany became the first Park player other than James Connolly or Kieran Delaney to score in the 55th minute.

Sean Tierney and Simon Fingleton scored after that as a late Mark Delany goal ensured that Park-Ratheniska won in style.

SCORERS – Park-Ratheniska: Kieran Delaney 0-6 (0-1 penalty), James Connolly 0-6 (two frees, two marks), Mark Delany 1-1, Sean Tierney 0-2, Simon Fingleton 0-1 Naomh Eoin: Anthony Hogan 1-0 (pen), Keith Hogan 0-1, Cathal Treacy 0-1, Conor Foley 0-1

PARK-RATHENISKA: Jamie Downey; Josh Mulhall, Jem Kavanagh, Benny Greene; Richie Hitchcock, Colm Brennan, Marc Ramsbottom; Podge Dunne, Simon Fingleton; Bryan Flanagan, Kieran Delaney, Mark Delany; James Connolly, Sean Tynan, Brian Dunne. Subs: Stephen Knowles for B Dunne and Sean Tierney for Flanagan (41), Keelan Barry for Brennan (49, inj), DJ O’Connell for Tynan (53), David McEvoy for Ramsbottom (58)

NAOMH EOIN: Andy O’Brien; Diarmuid Deacon, Michael Kavanagh, James O’Hara; James Smithers, Philip Smithers, Cathal Treacy; Diego Dunne, Martin Doyle; Anthony Hogan, Eanna Kavanagh, Scott Treacy; Eoin Redmond, Keith Hogan, John Michael Nolan Subs: Dwane Kavanagh for S Treacy (5, inj), Martin Clowry for K Hogan (14, inj), Conor Foley for E Kavanagh (19, inj), James Behan for Redmond (41), Ross McEvoy for Deacon (49)

Referee: Anthony Nolan (Wicklow)

SEE ALSO – In Pictures: Tributes paid as Laois woman brings four decade career of helping others to an end

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Stradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016.