MFC: O’Mahonys back on track

By Gerry McGrane


Summerhill 0-11

O’Mahonys 2-9

Navan O’Mahonys got their Championship title bid back on track following a four point away win over Summerhill. After losing at home to Dunshaughlin the previous week, it was a “must win” match for the Brews Hill side and they duly delivered the goods with four points to spare.

Conor Lyons was first on the scoreboard for Summerhill in the opening minute but this was cancelled out by a point from Robbie Keeleghan five mins later. Summerhill added two more points (1 free) before Ruairi O’Coileann added his first point from play after eleven minutes. The home side added a further three points (1 free) to lead 0-6 to 0-2 in the first quarter before midfielder Stephen Monaghan, made his presence known by running at the defence and sending the ball over the bar with a fine point from play.

Summerhill’s corner forward Kevin Ryan was proving a handful for the O’Mahonys defence and claimed half the scores in this opening twenty minutes. However, it was full forward Cormac McEntaggert who beat the keeper in the seconds that followed, got his hand to a high ball and sent it to the net to level the sides and give O’Mahony’s the momentum they needed. Ruairi O’Coileann added his second point from play three mins later to put O’Mahonys ahead by a point but once again, Ryan pointed a free to level the sides after twenty five mins. McEntaggert closed the first half with a pressure point from his weaker left foot to leave O’Mahonys leading the challenge by a solitary point heading into the second half.

Playing in the absence of long-term Team Manager, Finian Murtagh, the O’Mahonys squad reflected at the interval on their slow and difficult start but despite the onslaught of incessant rain, they continued on their mission in the second half. Summerhill’s corner forward Kevin Ryan opened the scoring in the second half with a free in the first minute to level the sides again. This was matched by a point from Ruairi O’Coileann two mins later to put O’Mahonys back in front and maintain advantage for the remainder of the match. Corner forward Corey Leddy found the net minutes later to leave the scoring 2-6 to 0-8 in favor of the visitors. Robbie Keeleghan notched up his second score with a free in the third quarter followed by yet another well taken point from play by O’Coileann. Midfielder Conor Murphy added added O’Mahonys last score with a free in the final quarter to leave the visitors ahead 2-9 to 0-8. Summerhill added three more points (two from frees) in the final quarter with Ryan on the scoreboard again. A last minute penalty awarded to Summerhill was equally matched by a fine save by O’Mahonys keeper: Colm Honan. This ended the contest and booked a quarter final place for O’Mahonys.

Once again, the O’Mahonys defence, in particular the full back line, stepped up to the bar and delivered on expectations. Despite a slow and nervous start O’Mahonys maintained focus and once they got in front, they were always going to be difficult to overcome. The introduction of Patrick Leahy to the half back line added a new dimension to the defence in the second half. Ruairi O’Coileann was instrumental scoring four points (one free). He led by example, picking up loose ball around midfield, driving forward and using the ball intelligently. Stephen Monaghan worked hard at midfield and secured a fine point at a crucial period in the first half. This point coupled with Cormac McEntaggerts first half goal was the turning point in the match.

Navan O’Mahonys now look forward to a home tie in the coming weeks against Ratoath in the quarter final.

Kevin Ryan top-scored for Summerhill with eight points. Jack Fagan and Conor Lyons were Summerhill’s two other scorers.

O’Mahony’s – 1. Colm Honan; James O’Malley, Conor Doyle, Andy Leech; Kevin O’Hanlon, Sean McEntaggert, Declan McGuinness; Stephen Monaghan (0-1), Conor Murphy (0-1); Peter Butler, Ruairi O’Coileann (0-4 1F), Patrick Leahy, Robert Keeleghan (0-2 1F), Cormac McEntaggert (1-1), Corey Leddy 1-0). Subs: Bryan Gibney for Kevin O’Hanlon, Darragh Green for Cormac McEntaggert, Timmy Murtagh for Peter Butler, Eoin Breathnach for Corey Leddy.

Summerhill: Shane Kavanagh; Jack Payne, Eoghan Jennings, David Myles; Sean Ryan, Iarla Hughes, Eamonn McDonnell; Ross Ryan, Jack Regan; Joseph Fox, Conor Lyons (0-1), Ronan Ryan; Richard Fox, Jack Fagan (0-2), Kevin Ryan (0-8, six frees). Subs: Cathal Ryan for Joseph Fox, Cathal Brien for Sean Ryan, Conor Gormley for Richard Fox, Sean McNally for Jack Payne.