Captain Robert Crotty is presented with the trophy
For 30 minutes little separated two evenly matched teams as Conahy Shamrocks and Dicksboro met in the Junior B county final in UPMC Nowlan Park on Sunday.
The Shamrocks led 1-6 to 0-8 at the interval and were marginally the better side with Dicksboro struggling to score from play.
The city side were heavily dependent on Eddie O’Donohoe for scores in the first half and his accuracy from placed balls in particular, ensured that Conahy were kept in check.
Two pointed frees and another from a 65 from O’Donohoe gave the city side a great start. It took Conahy Shamrocks eight minutes to register their first score, but when it came it was well-worked, Sean Brennan initially laying off the ball to Gary Dunne who then passed it to Bill Murphy to finish to the net. Mark Gunner edged Conahy ahead from a free, but all the time Eddie O’Donohoe was popping over points for the ’Boro.
Thomas Rice scored three points for Conahy from acute angles with Mark Gunner and Eddie O’Donohoe also on target for their sides from frees. Just before the interval Bill Murphy (CS) and Eoghan O’Neill (DB) exchanged points to leave Conahy ahead by the minimum margin at the interval (1-6 to 0-8).
Dicksboro scored four unanswered points in the opening five minutes of the second half through Eddie O’Donohoe (2), Nick Doheny and Shane O’Brien and they were now taking a firm hold on the game.
Conahy missed a great goal-scoring chance in the 38th minute when Thomas Rice’s shot went agonisingly wide.
Almost immediately Dicksboro attacked at the other end of the field with Colm O’Hara forcing a brilliant save from Andy O’Keeffe. Unfortunately for the Conahy goalie the ball broke kindly for Rory O’Connor, who shot to the net.
Dicksboro were now dominating all over the pitch and when Nick Doheny grabbed a second goal for the city side at the start of the fourth quarter the game was effectively over.
Two minutes later Niall Rowe, whose move from defence to midfield proved very effective, scored the ’Boro’s third goal when the Conahy defence was stretched and failed to clear.
Three late points from the impressive Nick Doheny left Dicksboro leading 3-18 to 1-8, but a late Conahy rally made the scoreboard look a little better before the final whistle.
Karl Downey and Thomas Rice grabbed points with Karl Downey blasting a close-in free to the net for Conahy’s second goal on the call of full-time.
Given the closeness of the first half exchanges, the one-sided nature of the second half was not anticipated.
Dicksboro were very impressive during the second period, dominating in most positions. They had impressive performers in Niall Rowe, especially in the second half, while Eddie O’Donohoe impressed throughout the game, as did David Conway, Robert Crotty, Colm O’Hara, Shane O’Brien and Nick Doheny.
Best for Conahy Shamrocks were Andy O’Keeffe, Darren Cuddihy, Frank Gunner, Mark Gunner, Sean Brennan, Thomas Rice and Bill Murphy.
Dicksboro - Brian Manogue, Niall Rowe (1-0), Evan Guilfoyle, Daire Maher, Charlie Nolan, David Conway, Robert Crotty (capt), Colm O’Hara (0-1), Rory O’Connor (1-0), James Carroll, Shane O’Brien (0-2), Tom Carroll, Rory Glynn, Eddie O’Donohoe (0-10, 0-6 frees, 0-1 65), Nickey Doheny (1-4).
Subs: Eoghan O’Neill (0-1), Eoin Dalton.
Conahy Shamrocks - Andy O’Keeffe, John Paul Gamble, Paraic Gunner, Ciaran Rice, Darren Cuddihy, Frank Gunner, Eoin Carroll, Mark Gunner (0-3 frees), Jack Murphy, Paddy Mullan, Sean Brennan (0-1), Harry O’Mahony, Thomas Rice (0-4), Garry Dunne (C), Bill Murphy (1-1).
Subs: Karl Downey (1-1, 1-0 free), Justin Brophy, Sean O’Dornan, Conor Watters, Oisín Cahill, Robbie Dooley, Michael Bergin, Geoffrey O’Shea.
Referee - Gavin Quilty.
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