It took just about every ounce of effort from Colemanstown U12’s to squeeze past a determined Craughwell side in absolutely baltic conditions this evening in Craughwell. Eventually Colemanstown found the way through to claim their latest league victory: 2-1 by way of the boot of 2 classic goals from Dylan Murphy & a whopper from Cian Burke after Craughwell had held out with some resolute defending in the first half.
The weather and strong breeze meant it was going to be a tricky evening and that it proved to be. Craughwell bossed the first half with the assistance of the stiff breeze while roles were reversed in the 2nd half as the breeze assisted Colemanstown. The game reached great heights of excitement with Colemanstown having to come from behind, some near misses and a nail biting finale as Craughwell searched hard for the all elusive equaliser.
The hosts took an early lead which was encouraging for them when Colemanstown conceded a penalty within 2 mins of the opening. Although there was some hesitancy in their camp as to who would take it, after a bit of deliberation, up stepped their striker who shot straight under Fionn Flattery’s body. Cian Burke had a half chance while up the other end Fionn Flattery was kept busy in goal with Craughwell efforts coming from all angles. At one stage he made a great save but as the ball slipped from his grasp he had to recover well to grab it on the 2nd attempt as two Craughwell players closed in on him. He was called into action again moments later with a quick double save, the ball defecting off his body on the 2nd attempt. On 21 mins Killy Hughes made a great run down the flank before crossing to Davy Walsh whose belter of that left peg of his was saved by the brave keeper’s body as the hollow sound of the save echoed around the pitch…. It had to have been sore on the poor keeper on a baltic cold evening. 2mins later as Craughwell broke on the counter, Fionn Flattery made another great save but as he was left stranded Jonah Donnellan had to track back to prevent the ball from dribbling over the goal line and then managed to toe poke it away whilst stretched on the ground to prevent an almost certain goal. On the 30th min mark Davy Walsh tried his luck with a low hard drill from midfield which wasn’t too far off target. Craughwell went close with a looping effort just before half time and so the score remained: Craughwell 1; Colemanstown 0.
The 2nd half was only 3mins old when Colemanstown equalised after great work from Cian Burke in midfield and a crossfield pass from Jonah Donnellan was greeted by Dylan Murphy who cut in across the box, held his composure to slot into the far corner to rapturous applause from the Colemanstown contingent on the sideline. Straight from the kick off, Cian Burke gave the team, the mentors and the fans great relief with a smashing effort into the top corner as his first effort ricocheted off a Craughwell body but he made certain of the 2nd attempt. Cian Burke then slotted into the right back position as Patrick Flynn took over powering the engine room at midfield. David Walsh took a speculative shot which took a deflection and fell kindly for Jonah Donnellan whose long-distance shot wasn’t too far away. At this stage it was Colemanstown who applied all the pressure assisted by the breeze as everyone on the sideline was certain that Ross Lally’s long range shot from left back looped into the top corner of the net but to his and particularly his mother’s dismay it found the top of the net instead. A quickly taken free from Donnellan to David Walsh was whipped into the box and Killian Hughes almost got his head to it. 21mins into the 2nd half, Fionn Flattery had to be vigilant to punch away a dipping free kick from Craughwell. Right at the death in a goalmouth scramble following a corner, Killy Hughes did his best to poke the ball over the line as the ref blew the final whistle. Colemanstown had just about hung on as the 200 puffing spectators applauded their youngsters and manager Jayo Finn with delight.
This victory keeps the Colemanstown boys in touch with just one game left to play against Merlin Woods on Sat 13th April at home but many eyes will be on Corrib Celtic vs Knocknacarra too on Saturday as the winner of that game will also be well in reach of the league title. Intriguing or what?
The other date for your diary is this Saturday 6th April when our U13’s play Cregmore in the league decider – it would be a crime to miss it! Also our U15’s play Oughterard in their last game of the season on Sat 13th, a draw or win will see them lift the silverware.