All-Ireland Schools Senior ‘B’ Football Championship Semi-Final (Paddy Drummond Cup)
Roscommon CBS 1-12
St. Patrick’s GS, Downpatrick 1-6
- Written by Dáire Walsh
Roscommon CBS produced a magnificent performance at UCD last night (Wednesday) to book their spot in the All-Ireland Schools Senior ‘a After a slow start to the contest, Jack McGahon fired to the net on eight minutes to settle the Connacht champions. They proceeded to dominate the remainder of the action and will now face Leinster kingpins Ashbourne Community College in the forthcoming Paddy Drummond Cup showpiece.
Both teams appeared to be evenly-matched on paper, but it was St. Patrick’s Grammar School of Downpatrick who opened the scoring through Ruairi O’Hare’s second-minute free. Eager to stamp his authority on the play, the dependable Mourne midfield added a brace of points in quick succession to create some early daylight between the teams.
Given the significance of the game, it was understandable that CBS experienced some early nerves at the south Dublin venue. However, they subsequently announced their arrival in this penultimate round encounter with a devastating counter-attack into the Pat’s half.
Following a lung-bursting break from Tim Lambe, McGahon was released on the left-hand side. Although his initial flicked effort was turned away by Downpatrick netminder Eoin Maginn, he made no mistake off a rebounded strike.
As a result, the confidence levels of CBS started to soar. The raiding Jack Lohan superbly split the posts on the run, while centre-forward Ciaran Lawless added a two-point salvo to give the Rossies some much-needed momentum.
With Pat’s becoming increasingly wasteful in possession – they registered five wides in the opening period – CBS looked to take full advantage. Keith Doyle and Liam Ormsby (free) contributed points in the 23rd and 25th minutes respectively, before Tim Prenter reduced the Pat’s deficit in time for the interval (1-5 to 0-4).
The northerners still had plenty to play for and it took an outstanding Colin Walsh block to deny inside forward Ruairi Quinn on the resumption. Nevertheless, it was CBS who continued to possess the clinical edge in attack.
Richard Walsh fired over at a tight-angle in the 33rd-minute – in advance of additional points courtesy of James Fitzpatrick and the increasingly-influential Lawless. In spite of their superiority, Pat’s received a potential lifeline inside the final-quarter.
O’Hare was switched to full-forward midway through the half and this decision paid rich dividends for the Pat’s management. He gathered possession inside the CBS cover and unleashed an unstoppable shot beyond the reach of Gustavo Rodrigues.
There was no reason for Roscommon to panic just yet, though, and determined substitute Charlie Carthy found the target with just nine minutes remaining on the clock. His second point off the bench was preceded by a similar score from wing-back Cian Murray and Lawless effectively sealed their place in the final with his fourth of the evening.
Pat’s responded through a late O’Hare brace, but it was never going to be enough to spoil the Roscommon CBS party.
Roscommon CBS: Gustavo Rodrigues; Jack Lohan, Colin Walsh, John Martin, Cian Glennon, James Browne, Cian Murray; Albert Looby, Keith Doyle; Richard Walsh, Ciaran Lawless, Tim Lambe; Liam Ormsby, James Fitzpatrick, James McGahon.
Subs: Charlie Carthy for Ormsby (44), Orin Walsh for Lambe (62).
St. Patrick’s GS, Downpatrick: Eoin Maginn; Tony Carson, Eoin Rooney, Jack Harbinson; Niall Laverty, Ronan Murphy, Peter McMullan; Tom Smyth, Ruairi O’Hare; Ciaran Watson, Brandon Boyd, Oran Cunningham; Ronan Conor, Ruairi Quinn, Tim Prenter.
Subs: Conor Murray for Cunningham (41), Dermot Donaldson for Quinn (46), Tom Savage for Watson (56).
Roscommon CBS: Ciaran Lawless 0-4 (4f), Jack McGahon 1-0, Charlie Carthy 0-2, Liam Ormsby (f), Jack Lohan, Cian Murray, Keith Doyle, Richard Walsh, James Fitzpatrick 0-1 each.
St. Patrick’s GS, Downpatrick: Ruairi O’Hare 1-5 (0-5f), Tim Prenter 0-1.
Referee: Seamus Mulhare (Laois).