Cnoc Mhuire, Granard have gone close to winning the Leinster Vocational Schools Senior ‘A’ Football Championship title in recent years and they suffered another unfortunate defeat when after staging a terrific comeback in wiping out a three-goal deficit they ended up losing by a single point against Maynooth Post-Primary in a drama packed quarter-final clash.
Played at the NUI Maynooth North Campus pitch on Tuesday of last week, this was always going to be a real tough battle for Cnoc Mhuire against strong opposition who were backboned by seven members of the Kildare squad that lost to Cork by the minimum of margins in the recent All-Ireland Vocational Schools Inter-County Senior Football Final.
There was a significant setback for the Granard school even before a ball was kicked as the flu struck forward Ciaran Mallon was ruled out completely and Cnoc Mhuire appeared to be in serious trouble when a rampant Maynooth PP side dominated the first quarter of the contest to establish a commanding 3-2 to 0-2 lead with the goals coming from lethal corner-forwards Neil Flynn and Chris Canning (2).
In fact, it could have been even worse for the visitors as Flynn failed to convert a penalty when his kick was well saved by the opposing keeper Conor Mallon in the 6th minute and Maynooth PP were seemingly cruising to a semi-final showdown against the reigning Leinster and All-Ireland champions Gallen Community School, Ferbane.
But goals from Conor Madden (24 mins) and Aidan McElligott (26 mins) brought Cnoc Mhuire right back into contention and they were just two points behind at the break, 3-5 to 2-6. The accurate Madden also fired over four points (two frees) while their other couple of scores in the first half came from the equally prominent McElligott.
To read the full match report, see this week’s Longford Leader.