Early goals set Mearnóg on their way to decider
U21'C' FC semi-final (2014)
Naomh Mearnóg advanced to the final of the Dublin Under 21 'C' Football Championship following their largely comfortable 4-11 to 1-9 success over St Anne's at Páirc Mearnóg last Saturday afternoon.
Their reward is a final date with Na Fianna next Saturday and the Portmarnock outfit will enter the decider with renewed confidence after producing a display that highlighted the depth of their panel.
With both Shane Carthy and Aodhán Fee absent, the hosts still managed to deliver a competent performance with their progression made all the easier after an impressive opening that included two goals.
"We were quick out of the traps and those two early goals set us on the way to victory," said Mearnóg manager Dave Storey.
"I felt that we were reasonably comfortable after that and our defence was solid enough to keep our lead for the rest of the game and hopefully we can get over the line next week," added Storey.
Andy Killeen was one defender who was especially impressive for the hosts, ensuring the platform provided by the attackers at the opposite end was maintained as St Anne's battled in vain to launch a comeback.
Killeen received valuable support from corner-back Conor Grant and there was a very strong showing in the middle third by the tireless Aaron Mulvey.
The scoring honours were largely shared by Jamie Storey and full-forward Conor Dillon as Mearnóg availed of the opportunities that came their way after the break.
For the visitors, it was a disappointing day at the office although they could be justifiably pleased with the excellent performance of wing-back Shane Corcoran, who belied his relative youth with a very composed display.
Lorcan Molloy threatened from full-forward before being redeployed to decent effect in the middle third while the always lively Scott Fulham chipped in with 1-3, albeit their collective contributions proved inadequate by the final whistle.
"It wasn't the best start for us," conceded St Anne's manager Stephen O'Brien.
"I thought that we had a good chance going into the game but it just wasn't to be on the day.
"Naomh Mearnóg were the better team than us over the hour and they played with a greater intensity than we did and, of course, we wish them all the best of luck in the final," said O'Brien.