Seniors v Aghamore–Senior Championship Relegation Semi-Final – Match Report
Aghamore 0-14 Davitts 1-11
Aghamore and Davitts will have to meet again after this entertaining Senior Championship relegation match ended in stalemate in Ballyhaunis on Sunday. Either team could have won the game but the general consensus afterwards was that a draw was the fair result.
The exchanges were tight and snappy early on with Fergal Boland opening the scoring, with a neat point for Aghamore on three minutes. Two Evan Ronane points in the 9th and 11th minutes put Davitts ahead before Ross Egan squared the game a minute later. Josh Ronayne put Davitts ahead and Colm Roche extended that lead to two with a point in the 16th minute. Aghamore regained the lead with two Ross Egan points and a fine long range effort from Sean Og Tighe in a three minute spell. Davitts lively corner forward Evan Ronane pointed in the 24th minute to level it again but Alan Freeman pointed in the 30th minute to put Aghamore one up.
Davitts full forward Paul Carey, having a fine game up to this, received a second yellow card a minute later and James McNieve pointed to put Aghamore two ahead. Evan Ronane pulled one back on the stroke of half time to leave Aghamore ahead by 0-7 to 0-6 at halftime.
Alan Freeman put Aghamore two points ahead in the 2nd minute of the second half. Two minutes later Evan Ronane was fouled but the referee Charlie Collins gave Davitts the advantage with Ronane’s shot saved under the crossbar by Aghamore keeper Daragh Lyons, who spilled the ball and Josh Ronayne flicked it to the net. Collins called back the play and awarded Davitts the original free kick to the dismay of their supporters. Ronan McNamara pointed the free with a superb kick to spare the referee’s blushes. Josh Ronayne levelled the game again int the 9th minute before Alan Freeman and Johnno Clarke exchanged scores. Brendan Harrison put Aghamore ahead in the 14th minute but Josh Ronayne equalised three minutes later.
Aghamore began to use the extra man to good effect in the final quarter and four unanswered points from Sean Og Tighe, Fergal Boland (2) and Alan Freeman looked to have swung the game in their favour with six minutes remaining. They could have sealed it but for a heroic interception from Colm Roche a minute later.
Davitts then showed admirable fighting spirit and after Michael Conroy fed Josh Ronayne who burst through only to be fouled by Aghamore corner back Aidan Henry inside the square, Andrew Peters showed his nerve with a cool finish from the spot kick. Evan Ronane slotted the equaliser with a minute to go. Both teams could have won it in the final moments but a replay next Sunday at 1pm in Ballyhaunis is probably the fairest outcome.
Best for Davitts were Cathal Higgins, Tommy Waldron, Colm Boyle, Johnno Clarke, Ronan McNamara, Colm Roche, Josh Ronayne and Evan Ronane.
Aghamore were best served by Brendan Harrison, Niall Freeman, Iarla Carty, Sean Og Tighe, Fergal Boland, Ross Egan and Alan Freeman.
Davitts: Adrian McNamara, Patrick Keadin, Cathal Higgins, Padraig Mangan, Tommy Waldron, Colm Boyle, Johnno Clarke (0-1), Declan Healy, Josh Ronayne (0-3), Keith Prendergast, Colm Roche (0-1), Andrew Peters (1-0), Paul Carey, Ronan McNamara (0-1), Evan Ronane (0-5). Sub used: Michael Conroy.
Aghamore: Daragh Lyons, Aidan Henry, David Kenny, James McNieve (0-1), Niall Freeman, Iarla Carty, Brendan Harrison (0-1), Sean Og Tighe (0-2), Robert Lyons, Fergal Boland (0-3), Kenny Feeney, Ross Egan (0-3), Alan Freeman (0-4), James Lyons.
Referee: Charlie Collins (Lacken).