Mullinalaghta midfielder John Keegan wins the ball in this tussle with Killoe opponent Paddy Kiernan. Action from the SFC quarter-final on Saturday evening last. Photo: Declan Gilmore
Mullinalaghta somehow managed to survive in this Senior Football Championship quarter-final clash as a brilliant goal from James McGivney in stoppage time saw the title holders snatch a dramatic draw against Killoe.
Killoe Emmet Og . . . 0-14 Mullinalaghta St Columba’s . . . 2-8
In front of a big 1,000 plus attendance at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park on Saturday evening last, impressive Emmet Og dominated the first half and appeared to be coasting to victory when they established a commanding 0-9 to 0-1 lead with 18 minutes gone on the clock.
And it could have been even worse for St Columba’s as Larry Moran blasted the ball over the bar with the goals at his mercy in the early stages of the game while on the stroke of half-time Sean McCormack shot wide when looking all set to finish the ball to the net.
Mullinalaghta managed to close the gap as they trailed by 0-11 to 0-6 at the break and got right back into contention with a goal from John Keegan with less than a minute gone on the changeover.
As it turned out Killoe succeeded in scoring just three more points in the second half, a brace in quick succession from Sean McCormack (free and play) with Denis McGoldrick converting a close range free in the 56th minute, and looked to have done enough to book their place in the semi-final despite missing a penalty in the 42nd minute.
Larry Moran, a constant threat in the Emmet Og full-forward-line, was brought down in the square by Aidan McElligott and stepped up to take the penalty but his kick was saved by St Columba’s keeper Patrick Rogers.
Both teams were reduced to 14 players when David McGivney (49th minute) and Sean McCormack (53rd minute) were sent-off for second yellow card offences and Mullinalaghta looked beaten when they registered a few bad wides in the closing stages of the game.
But the reigning county champions showed a lot of courage in refusing to accept defeat and in the second minute of additional time James McGivney planted a powerful shot into the roof of the net to leave the sides all square.
There was still time for more drama as wides followed from Paddy Kiernan (Killoe) and Shane Mulligan (Mullinalaghta) and with virtually the last kick of the game Larry Moran almost won it for Emmet Og when his attempt for the winning point hit the upright.
So these fierce rivals will meet again in the replay on Sunday next (4.45pm) and Killoe must still be wondering how they did not succeed in coming out on top last weekend after producing a swashbuckling first half performance that yielded 11 points.
The scores were registered by Larry Moran (3), Sean McCormack (2), Daniel Mimnagh (2), Mark Hughes (2), Michael Quinn and Denis McGoldrick while four of the six Mullinalaghta points in the first half came from frees converted by David McGivney.
Rian Brady landed the opening score of the game direct from the throw-in with Aidan McElligott also on target in the first half while McGivney (free) and Brady added another point apiece in the second half as St Columba’s got back on level terms in a remarkable recovery.
Killoe had to wait until the 47th minute for their first score on the changeover and looked like holding out until the Mullinalaghta saviour James McGivney struck to score a spectacular equalising goal in a very exciting finish.
KILLOE EMMET OG: Shane Fitzpatrick; Conor Moran, Cian Farrelly, Liam Hughes; Daniel Mimnagh (0-2, one ‘45’), Padraig McCormack, Ryan Moffett; Paddy Kiernan, Michael Quinn (0-1); Denis McGoldrick (0-2, one free), Mark Hughes (0-2), Ronan McGoldrick; Larry Moran (0-3), Sean McCormack (0-4, two frees), Terry McCormack.
Sub:- Joe McCormack for T McCormack (56 mins).
Blood sub:- Ciaran Donohoe for T McCormack (27 mins). T McCormack back on for C Donohoe at the start of the second half.
MULLINALAGHTA ST COLUMBA’S: Patrick Rogers; Patrick Fox, Donal McElligott, James Mooney; Francis Mulligan, Shane Mulligan, Luke Meehan; David McGivney (0-5, all frees), John Keegan (1-0); Conor McElligott, James McGivney (1-0), Gary Rogers; Jayson Matthews, Aidan McElligott (0-1), Rian Brady (0-2).
Subs:- Conan Brady for L Meehan (15 mins); Simon Cadam for J Mooney (27 mins); Ruairi McElligott for C McElligott (60 mins).
Referee: Patrick Maguire (St Mary’s Granard).
Who will win the replay?