ADULT FOOTBALL LEAGUE DIVISION ONE ROUND-UP
ADULT FOOTBALL LEAGUE DIVISION ONE ROUND-UP: MAY 26
By Daire Walsh
Ballyboden St Enda’s stretched their lead at the summit of the Adult Football League Division One table to three points with a 4-15 to 2-11 victory against St Vincent’s at Pairc Naomh Uinsionn on Sunday morning.
Since they shared the spoils with county champions Kilmacud Crokes at the beginning of March at Pairc Ui Murchu, ‘Boden’s league form has been imperious. Four wins on the trot re-affirmed their push for top-flight honours and with Ballinteer St John’s and Crokes dropping points on Wednesday, they became the division’s outright leaders.
They faced a Vincent’s side who were seeking to build on their own midweek success over St Brigid’s, but it was the in-form ‘Boden who ruled the roost. Supplementing his brother Ryan’s six-point haul, Colm Basquel amassed a personal tally of 1-5.
Additionally, Tom Hayes (two) and Darren O’Reilly grabbed goals to ensure Ballyboden shook off the attentions of their Marino counterparts. Kilmacud conceded further ground to their southside rivals on Saturday evening, when they fell to a 5-16 to 2-19 defeat at the hands of Naomh Maur in Rush.
Following a high-scoring opening half, Maur’s held a slender advantage (2-12 to 2-11) on home soil. Crokes subsequently edged ahead after the resumption, only for a Ciaran Archer penalty in the 41st-minute to galvanise the hosts once again.
They possessed the midas touch in front of goal during the closing-quarter and despite the best efforts of Crokes, Maur’s ultimately secured their fourth win of the campaign. As a consequence of this result, Kilmacud now slip down to third-place in the standings.
The form of St Jude’s has picked up considerably in recent weeks and the Wellington Lane men recorded their fourth victory on the bounce away to Skerries Harps on Sunday. They put the previously unbeaten Ballinteer St John’s to the sword four days earlier and backed it up with a convincing 0-13 to 0-6 triumph in Skerries.
The 2018 county finalists have now leap-frogged Kilmacud into second on score difference, while Ballinteer are just behind the latter after they suffered a second straight reversal to St Brigid’s.
Playing at their alternative home venue of Ballinteer Community School, John’s created initial daylight through a Glenn Whelan goal on the stroke of 15 minutes. Another Ballinteer major followed through Aaron Bradshaw, before Brigid’s dug deep during a frantic second-quarter.
Sean Egan and Cathal Doyle both rattled the net for the visitors – Doyle’s strike coming at the tail end of a superb team move involving Philly Ryan and Dublin senior star Paddy Andrews. Playing with the aid of a gale force breeze, Ballinteer struck a third goal prior to the interval.
Dan O’Leary brilliantly gathered possession off his side’s kick-out and released Bradshaw for his second of the half. Although they found themselves two points adrift (3-3 to 2-4) at the break, Brigid’s were confident of a big impact with the elements behind them.
It remained a tight affair for long stretches of the play, until Collie Carr bagged a 50th-minute goal to effectively determine the outcome of the contest. The presence of a fully-fit Andrews is a major plus for Brigid’s and he kicked five points to aid the cause of the Russell Park outfit.
Ryan and Lorcan McCarthy (two points apiece) were also dangerous throughout, while Mark Donnelly and Eoin Devitt impressed in defence. Their second win of the term moves them away from the danger zone and within distance of the top half.
With Templeogue Synge Street losing out to Na Fianna at Dolphin Park (5-16 to 2-9), St Oliver Plunkett’s/Eoghan Ruadh and Thomas Davis had a chance to ease their respective relegation fears. They entered round seven without a point to their name, but that all changed at Martin Savage Park on Sunday morning.
The two sides proved inseparable on the Navan Road, with a final scoreline of 3-12 (Plunkett’s) to 2-15 (Davis’) giving them some form of solace ahead of the next phase of games on June 8. It was also a stalemate at 12th Lock, where Lucan Sarsfields played host to Ballymun Kickhams (1-16 to 2-13).
Meanwhile, Cuala moved into seventh with a 3-14 to 0-10 win over Fingallians at Hyde Park. Courtesy of their midweek successes, both teams embarked on this game in fine spirits.
Nevertheless, it was the Dalkey men who reigned supreme in this Saturday afternoon clash. While Liam McHugh, James Power and Luke Keating three-pointers were crucial for Cuala, the performance of Niall O’Callaghan (brother of Con and Cian) went a long way towards ensuring they came out on top.
Conor Mullally and Peadar O Cofaigh Byrne were also in excellent form for Cuala, who have stretched their unbeaten league run to four games.