Second half collapse sees seniors run come to an end

Senior Football Division 3
4 May 2014
Red Hugh's 1-11
Aodh Ruadh 0-12
Pairc Aodh Rua

Aodh Ruadh let a five point half time lead slip in Killygordon on Saturday evening. The damage was done in the first quarter of the second half when the home side scored five unanswered points and then three minutes from the end when the lively Colm Melaugh scored the winning goal.

The visitors completely dominated the first half. They should have been even further ahead but for poor shooting and some terrible shot selection. It would be this and a complete deterioration of discipline that would eventually cost them the game.

Aodh Ruadh played with the wind in the first half, but both teams took some time to settle, with a wide each. Johnny Gallagher made a good run forward from defence but his progress was halted by a bad tackle. Johnny receiving a nasty bang to the head and was temporally replaced by Colm Kelly. From the resulting free David McGurrin kicked the opening point. Kelly only fresh on then gave away a sloppy foul and Damien Browne punished, a precursor of things to come.

Midfielder Martin Bonner hit the post and the returning Johnny Gallagher had a bad wide as the game continued scrappy. Bonner atoned for his earlier miss to put the home side in the lead for the first time. A lead that they would not regain until four minutes from time.

Ronan Drummond and Jamie McDonald saw efforts drop short. David Dolan kicked wide from just 13 metres as the visitors pressed forward. Ronan McGurrin finally scored and moments later Jamie McDonald had them back in front. Further points from play from David McGurrin, David Dolan, Ronan Drummond and Ronan McGurrin put them five up, 0-7 to 0-2. But two bad wides from Damien Cleary and Ryan Granaghan meant it stayed at five. Cleary then gave away a needless foul on Damian Browne. Browne kicked the resulting free himself. Cleary made amends for it though with a good point as the half closed. There was still time for both McDonald and Drummond to see good chances blocked down in quick succession. This left the half time score of 0-8 top 0-3 in favour of the visitors.

Red Hugh's with the half time grilling still ringing in their ears started the second half in whirlwind fashion. They opened with two bad wides before Browne pointed two frees. Kerry Ryan replaced Cleary but his first involvement was to receive a yellow card for an off the ball incident. From the resulting free the ball was worked to Damian Browne to point.

Aodh Ruadh were struggling to get the ball even beyond the half way line, as Red Hugh's swarmed forward in waves. On the next attack the defence worked well and Red Hugh's seemed to be going nowhere. However just as they had been dispossessed, Aodh Ruadh somehow managed to spill the ball. It fell into the grateful hands of Browne, who left just a point in it. Aodh Ruadh were cut open on the next attack which could have led to a goal. Having lost control around the middle with neither primary possession or breaking balls being won their defence was being over ran with over lapping Red Hugh's players. A swift one-two was played and PJ Gallagher was about to shoot for goal. Johnny Gallagher coming across to cover ever so slightly mis-timed his shoulder and brought him down. Gallagher receiving a yellow and Browne kicked the resulting free to tie up the game.

Some 15 minutes had now elapsed in the second half. Aodh Ruadh finally put an attack of any note together. Donagh McIntyre caught a good kickout and two passes later David McGurrin found himself through up the middle. He took his chance early electing to fist the ball over the bar. Colm Melaugh responded for Red Hughs. Good work from David Dolan and Johnny Gallagher saw Ronan McGurrin point. But that was to be as good as it got for the away side as with 13 minutes left they completely fell apart.

Ronan McGurrin got a yellow for a high tackle and David McGurrin dropped an effort short. Michael Ward was some what harshly black carded, Kieran Keown replacing him. David Dolan then missed a free. With Aodh Ruadh pressing they were leaving gaps at the back. Ciaran Bradley found himself one on one with Peter Boyle. But Boyle pulled off a top drawer save to knock it out for a '45. Peter McMenamin took it and his kick just cleared Boyle's crossbar to leave it ten points each.

Aodh Ruadh once again gave away a needless foul and the referee brought it forward for dissent to a more scoreable position. Damian Browne made no mistake for his eighth point of the day. Then came the killer goal. As had been the case with their previous two goal chances Red Hugh's found themselves with an abundance of players in the Aodh Ruadh half. They worked the ball through and Colm Melaugh buried the ball into the roof of the net.

The visitors were dead on their feet. There was only going to be one winner. Their chances were not helped by Donagh McIntyre foolishly getting a red card for back chat to the referee. David McGurrin did add two late frees to leave two in it, but time was against them. One last chance was created but from a narrow angle Kerry Ryan saw his goal effort go wide. From the resulting kick-out the referee brought the game to an end, much to the joy of the home team and their supporters.

Not the best of starts to a double fixture weekend for Aodh Ruadh. It was a game that could have been as good as over at half time if the right options were taken. Their second half collapse in both form and discipline will be a concern. But maybe the quick turn around might be the best thing for them, to put matters right.

To say it was a one man effort would take a bit away from this Red Hugh's victory. But Damien Browne was by far the best player on the pitch. However not only was he aided by his own team mates especially Colm Melaugh but also Aodh Ruadh's poor marking and tackling.

For the away side the full back line of Gallagher, Whoriskey and Ward did well. Around the middle Ronan McGurrin, Kerry Ryan and Donagh McIntyre tried hard. But up front only David McGurrin played to anywhere near their potential. After this loss Mondays game takes on an even greater significance as after that Aodh Ruadh face three tricky away trips in succession.

Vital Statistics
Teams
Red Hugh's
L. Kelly, G. Kelly, T. Mc M, D. McGarvey, P. Mc M (0-1, 45), P. Mc Glinchey, S. Mc McMenamin, M. Bonner (0-1), E. Browne, R. Gallen, D. Browne (0-8, 6f), J. Mc McMenamin, M. Wilson, C. Melaugh (1-1), PJ Gallagher.
Substitutes: J. Carlin for Wilson : 15 mins, C. Bradley for Gallen : 40 mins, P. Byrne for J. Mc McMenamin :50 mins, C. Doherty for E. Browne : 55 mins.
Aodh Ruadh
Peter Boyle, Johnny Gallagher, Ciron Whoriskey, Michael Ward, Conor Patton, Eammon McGrath, Michael Dolan, Ronan McGurrin (0-3), Donagh McIntyre, David Dolan (0-1), Diarmaid McInerney, Ronan Drummond (0-1), Damien Cleary (0-1), David McGurrin (0-5, 3f), Jamie McDonald (0-1).
Substitutes: Ryan Granaghan for McInerney : 25 mins; Kerry Ryan for Cleary : 37 mins; Colm Kelly for McDonald : 47 mins; Kieran Keown for Ward (black card) : 52 mins; Daniel Kelly, Niall Murray.

Last modified: Monday, 5 May 2014 at 10:36pm