Walterstown survive stern Moylagh test
Walterstown scraped over the line by 0-16 to 1-11 in a tense opening round IFC tussle against Moylagh at Carlanstown on Friday evening writes RUTH CHAMBERS
Going into the game Martin O’Connell’s charges were favourites to take victory, but they had it anything but all their own way.
During the eight minutes of time added on at the end by referee Keith Sheerin, Moylagh threw everything at the Blacks defence.
Two goal attempts went over the bar and Walterstown survived to secure victory.
After losing to Trim in the A FL the previous Wednesday, Walterstown welcomed back Cathal Hennelly and Conor Farrelly in defence while captain Alban Crosbie also returned.
The attack was bolstered by the inclusion of Robbie Cunningham and Ruairi O’Dowd, but Moylagh went two points in front early on when the impressive Tomas O’Reilly sent over a free and midfield man Sean Reilly also split the posts.
Walterstown lost full-back Hennelly to an early black card, but the Blacks found their rhythm and began to get on top and finished out the first half well.
Crosbie (free) opened their account and in the 11th minute Sam McCabe rose to win Aengus Fanning’s kick out before he carried and split the posts.
Walterstown restored parity three minutes later (0-3 each) when Crosbie rose highest and from the resultant mark he picked out O’Dowd who fired over.
Moylagh responded well however and nudged in front again by the 19th minute thanks to another converted O’Reilly free, but for the remainder of the half Walterstown who were on top.
Barry O'Connell's point drew the sides level again and McCabe doubled his tally when he raised a white flag after collecting possession from wing back Aron McLoughlin.
Despite losing Conor Farrelly to a thigh injury, the Blacks remained strong in the run up to the break.
Crosbie converted two frees and Farrelly’s replacement Mark McCormack also split the posts.
However, Moylagh replied when Tomas O’Reilly bagged a point to leave the north Meath men adrift by 0-5 to 0-8 at the interval.
Thirty seconds after the resumption O’Dowd pointed, but it was quickly cancelled out by a point from Joe Melia.
Moylagh were on level terms when full-back Darren Gibney found the net following a sweeping move that involved Tomas O’Reilly and Sean Reilly to level again (0-9 to 1-6).
Three successive points for the Blacks, Crosbie (two frees) and O’Dowd, left them 0-12 to 1-6 ahead at the three-quarter stage.
Walterstown were guilty of some poor shooting and errors subsequently and were punished when when O’Reilly sent over a free, but Crosbie settled the nerves with a converted free with five minutes remaining.
Hennelly received a red card in the 57th minute and Moylagh took that as their opportunity to really put the pressure on.
O’Reilly sent over another free, but Davy Donnellan point at the other end.
Adam Treanor saw his shot on goal superbly saved by Aengus Fanning and the insurance point came from Brian O’Connell in the third minute of stoppage time.
Moylagh surged forward, but had to be content with a brace of points as Walterstown clung on.
Up next for the Blacks is a second round meeting with St Patrick’s in Duleek while Moylagh take on St Michael’s in Carnaross.
Walterstown - Alban Crosbie 0-6 five frees, Ruairi O’Dowd 0-3, Sam McCabe 0-2, Barry O’Connell 0-2, Mark McCormack 0-1, Davy Donnellan 0-1, Brian O’Connell 0-1.
Moylagh - Tomas O’Reilly 0-6 five frees, Darren Gibney 1-0, Rory Gibney 0-2, Sean Reilly 0-2 one free, Joe Melia 0-1.
Walterstown - John Davis; Peter Reynolds, Cathal Hennelly, Eoin O’Mahony; Conor Farrelly, Colin McGrane, Aron McLoughlin; Conor O’Sullivan, Barry O’Connell; Robbie Cunningham, Alban Crosbie, Sam McCabe; Davy Donnellan, Brian O’Connell, Ruairi O’Dowd.
Subs - Mark McCormack for C Farrelly 28 mins, Adam Treanor for S McCabe 44 mins.
Black card - C Hennelly
Moylagh - Aengus Fanning; Shane Gibney, Darren Gibney, Aaron Hand; Alan McCann, Padraic Traynor, Sean Peyton; Sean Reilly, Joe Melia; Niall McLarney, Tomas O’Reilly, Ciaran Burke; Rory Gibney, Colm Fionnin, Peter Fox.
Sub - Ciaran Hannon replaced R Gibney 37 mins.
Referee - Keith Sheerin.