Gaels get the better of Aodh Ruadh

Senior Division 3
6 September 2015
Aodh Ruadh 2-13
Letterkenny Gaels 4-8
Father Tierney Park

Aodh Ruadh's promotion hopes took a body blow after Letterkenny Gaels romped through for four goals and took full points from Father Tierney Park.

The warning signs were there from early on. Barry Mulligan got the hosts off the mark with an early point, but Letterkenny Gaels were lively and Conor McBrearty got them into the game with a close range point eight minutes in. He added a second a minute later after the visitors turned over Peter Boyle's kick out. Indeed the Gaels were to dominate midfield for huge swathes of this game.

David McGurrin levelled the game straight from kick out, but Aodh Ruadh were hit with the first goal a minute later. Cormac Cannon finishing a rapid move up the pitch with 11 minutes gone.

It got worse seven minutes later when a 45 from Letterkenny failed to find the distance, two previous 45s also having failed to make the distance. Two Aodh Ruadh players failed to collect the ball and it came to Conor McBrearty who will seldom score a handier goal.

A minute later the Gaels piled on the pain as Brendan O'Brien swept over a long range score.

With nine minutes remaining in the half Barry Mulligan drilled over a much needed point for the hosts, but a minute later Aodh Ruadh gave away a third sickening goal.

Peter Boyle did well to block down Conor McBrearty, but the Aodh Ruadh defence was marked absent as Paddy Doherty was gifted the Gaels second tap-in goal of the game.

When Mark Hunter pointed with six minute left in the half Aodh Ruadh were 11 points in arrears and could have had no complaints about that scoreline. A Michael 'Sticky' Ward free and points from Johnny Gallagher and Seamus Kane before the break narrowed the gap to eight points, but there remained a mountain to climb in the second 30 for the hosts, 0-5 to 3-4.

Aodh Ruadh got the ideal start to the second half. David McGurrin switched play well to Johnny Gethins who hit the net to cut the deficit to five points.

A 45 from Conor McBrearty put two goals in it three minutes in, but Aodh Ruadh continued to rattle over the scores.

Johnny Gethins and Pauric Patton added two points in two minutes before Barry Mulligan took the Ernesiders to within a goal after some smart play from Sticky Ward.

Letterkenny were well penned back at this stage, however a break on 38 minutes should have seen Ciaran Cannon hit the net but his shot blazed over.

Aodh Ruadh took the ball straight up the pitch and again Sticky Ward was on hand to tee up the opportunity, this time for David McGurrin to slam to the back of the net. Points from Seamus Kane and Diarmaid McInerney then took Aodh Ruadh back into the lead for the first time since the early moments of the first half. 2-10 to 3-6 the score with 41 minutes gone.

But once again an unfocused Ballyshannon allowed the Gaels to coast through for a goal. It was all too easy as the visitors sliced through the Aodh Ruadh defence to line up Sean McDonagh for the chance and he finished neatly to the net to leave the hosts back at the foot of the mountain trying to eke scores from a packed Gaels defence.

Aodh Ruadh needed the next score, but if fell to Aaron Stewart to put a goal between the sides again.

Sticky Ward capitalised on good work from Johnny Gethins to point, and then Mickey Dolan did well to win the kick out before letting the ball on to Pauric Patton for the score.

However with two minutes left Letterkenny played keep ball and their patience was rewarded with a fine point from the boot of Conor McBrearty for the insurance score.

Aodh Ruadh had the last say in the game when Sticky Ward pointed three minutes into added time, but by that stage time was up and the points left with the Gaels.

A very tough loss to take for Aodh Ruadh. It was a poor day for the defence and most of the best displays came up front during the third quarter when the homesters were chasing the game. Sticky Ward did well setting up chances for others and finished with a three point haul. David McGurrin, Johnny Gethins, Barry Mulligan, Diarmaid McInerney and Pauric Patton all made positive contributions.

For Letterkenny Gaels Conor McBrearty was on a hot streak of form and apart from scoring 1-4 he created a host of opportunities throughout the game.

Vital Statistics
Teams
Aodh Ruadh
Peter Boyle; Michael Dolan, Conor Patton, Michael Ward; Niall Murray, Johnny Gallagher (0-1), Ronan Drummond; Damian Cleary, Johnny Gethins (1-1); David Dolan, Diarmaid McInerney (0-1), Barry Mulligan (0-2); Pauric Patton (0-2), Michael 'Sticky' Ward (0-3, 1f), David McGurrin (1-1).
Substitutes: Seamus Kane (0-2) for Michael Ward 18m; Niall Harley for Ronan Drummond 49m; Philip Patton for Niall Murray 53m.
Letterkenny Gaels
Shane Graham; Shane McGlade, Darren Hunter, Oisin Cannon; Sean McDonagh (1-0), Ciaran Cannon (0-1), Aaron Stewart (0-1); Liam Doherty, Brendan McBrien (0-1); Paddy Doherty (1-0), Mark Hunter (0-1), Michael Harte; Cormac Cannon (1-0), Conor McBrearty (1-4, 1 45), Conor Browne.
Referee: Michael McShane (Kilcar).
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Last modified: Monday, 7 September 2015 at 10:28pm