The Railyard football club secured a famous victory when they overcame a resilient Aughrim to advance in the Leinster Intermediate football championship.
The 20 times senior football champions of Kilkenny beat Wicklow’s intermediate football champions in Freshford on Sunday, as they moved into the second round.
Paul Donnelly starred in what was a morale-boosting victory for the North Kilkenny side, the forward grabbing 2-1 as he had a huge say in the outcome of the game.
It wasn’t smooth sailing early on however, as Aughrim stormed out of the blocks with a show of serious intent.
Inside the opening five minutes they led by 1-2 to no score, and seemed to be on course for a big win.
Rory O’Brien split the Railyard defence to grab the opening goal. Points from Dean Newsome meant Railyard faced an uphill battle early on.
They responded in clinical fashion. With eight minutes played Paul Donnelly nabbed a goal after a powerful run from Caleb Roche carved Aughrim open.
A point from O’Brien put the Wicklow side three ahead before Donnelly struck for his second goal of the match.
A high delivery from Caleb Roche broke near the Aughrim goalmouth. Donnelly was in the right place at the right time to send the ball to the net.
That goal gave his side a huge boost. After their early dominance, Aughrim were looking somewhat shaky.
Philip and Caleb Roche tacked on the next two scores for the Railyard as they took the lead for the first time in the game.
Caleb Roche added a further score in first half injury-time, putting his side 2-3 to 1-5 ahead at the break.
Aughrim quickly equalised following the restart when Derek Kavanagh shot his side’s sixth point with a curling right footed effort from the wing.
It was one of the scores of the game, but the sweetly-moving Wicklow side were still struggling against the teak tough defending offered by the Kilkenny side.
Railyard’s Philip Roche pointed twice before their leading scorer for the season, Sean Brennan, put his side in a narrow two point lead midway through the second half.
Paul Donnelly came agonisingly close to grabbing what would have been a well-deserved hat-trick when he broke past the Aughrim full-back line, but his shot was pushed onto the crossbar by the ’keeper before going over.
Railyard had the chances to close out the game on a number of occasions in the closing moments, but it wasn’t until the 61st minute that Caleb Roche pointed sweetly from a placed effort that they knew the game was theirs.
The determination showed by the Kilkenny sides defence was huge and their unrelenting attitude to the Aughrim forwards meant that they conceded just two points in the second half.
Next up for Railyard is a meeting with Eadestown of Kildare in the second round.
Railyard - P. Donnelly (2-1) C. Roche (0-3, 0-2 frees), P. Roche (0-3, 0-1 free), S. Brennan (0-1). Aughrim - D. Newsome (0-4, 0-3 frees), R. O’Brien (1-1), D. Kavanagh (0-2).
Railyard - J. Mansfield, E. Boran, O. Roche, D. O’Neill, P. Kelly, E. Roche, F. Brennan, K. Phillips, C. McDonald, P. Roche, C. Roche, R. Walsh, P. Brennan, P. Donnelly, G. Campion.Subs: S. Brennan
Aughrim - L. O’Rourke, O. Doyle, L. D. Kennan, C. Lambert, B. Byrne, A. Holt, J. Byrne, S. Mann, P. Phelan, P. Kavanagh, S. Farrell, D. Kavanagh, R. O’Brien, D. Newsome, M. Brennan.