Monday 18 December 2017

Lucan attack on fire

Twamley and Smith in sparkling form against Sylvester's

Corner-forwards Seán Twamley and CJ Smith were in fine form at Arthur Griffith Park on Sunday morning, when Lucan Sarsfields enjoyed a comprehensive victory over a depleted St Sylvester's in Division Two of the Minor Football League.

This was Lucan's second league victory of the current campaign (the first came in a low-scoring away encounter with St Jude's two weeks ago), but following earlier reversals against Naomh Olaf and St Oliver Plunkett's/Eoghan Ruadh, their Malahide countparts are still searching for their first competitive success of 2015.

However, despite what the final scoreline may suggest, there was little to separate the sides during the early moments of the contest. Syls netminder Niall McCann was forced into an excellent point-blank save by Callum Buchanan three minutes in, but it wasn't until the eighth-minute that the deadlock was broken.

A pointed free from Cathal ó Maolmhana got Lucan up and running on this occasion, but with Luke Troy playing in a withdrawn role, Syls were gathering plenty of possession.

A lot of their attempts at goal were falling into the hands of Lucan shotstopper Paul O'Grady, though, and thanks to scores by Twamley and CJ Smith, the hosts were gradually creating daylight between the teams.

Their fourth point didn't arrive until the 25th minute - a second successful ó Maolmhana place-kick - but the floodgates were opened by Donal Smith's clinical three-pointer from the subsequent attack.

Twamley followed this score with a majestic 1-1 salvo, and thanks to fine points from CJ Smith and Buchanan, they were beginning to run riot.

Syls finally opened their account with an eye-catching Troy effort in first-half stoppage-time, but with 12 points to spare (2-7 to 0-1) at the interval, Lucan were odds-on for back-to-back triumphs.

Syls half-back Liam Sweeney took over from McCann between the sticks when the action resumed, and he made a string of fine saves from an increasingly-rampant Lucan forward line.


He also got his hands to Ciarán Dowling's fierce strike on 35 minutes, but was ultimately beaten by the right-foot of the wing-forward.

Buchanan had earlier kicked his second point of the day, but inside forward Seán Meehan did raise the spirits of Syls with a fine score from 30 metres.

He also found the target from a 48th-minute free, but this came after CJ Smith's much-deserved goal at the end of the third-quarter.

Substitute Dan Tomley set-up this opportunity for Smith, and his quick free enabled Twamley to score his second major on the stroke of 50 minutes. It was a case of damage limitation for Sylvester's moving into the closing stages of the tie, and they did manage to score a goal of their own through the lively Jamie Kennedy.

Meehan also registered his third point eight minutes from time, but thanks to a scrambled three-pointer by half-back Donal Flannery, as well as points from the deadly duo of CJ Smith and Twamley, Eoin Dunne's charges finished with a flourish.

Scorers - Lucan Sarsfields: S Twamley 2-3, CJ Smith 1-3, D Flannery, C Dowling, D Smith 1-0 each, C O Maolmhana (2f), C Buchanan 0-2 each. St Sylvester's: J Kennedy 1-0, S Meehan 0-3 (2f), L Troy 0-1 each.

LUCAN SARSFIELDS: P O'Grady; D Kelly, D Forde, D Reynolds; D Flannery, T Behan, J Dowling; B Hayes, C Heffernan; C Buchanan, C O Maolmhana, C Dowling; CJ Smith, D Smith, S Twamley. Subs: D Tomley for D Smith (36), C Rogers for Buchanan (42).

ST SYLVESTER'S: N McCann; N Duffy, S Foley, M O'Hara; L Cassidy, C Doyle, L Sweeney; E Cooney, M Meaney; E Ryan, M McCormack, D Murphy; J Kennedy, L Troy, S Meehan. Subs: E Reid for O'Hara (ht), S Cronin for McCann (ht), O'Hara for Duffy (45).

MENTORS - Lucan Sarsfields: E Dunne, D Herlihy, D Glover, G O'Neill. St Sylvester's: C Meehan, P Kavanagh, P Reid.

REFEREE: Seán ó Canainn (Ballyboden St Enda's).

WIDES - Lucan Sarsfields: 10 (9+1). St Sylvester's: 11 (1+10).

CONDITIONS: Cloudy and breezy, but also dry.

PLAYER OF THE MATCH: Seán Twamley (Lucan Sarsfields).

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