Sars align to leave Raheny in shade
Delmar points way forward for impressive Lucan outfit
LUCAN SARSFIELDS 3-15, RAHENY 1-10
A clinical Lucan Sarsfields gave an exhibition in score-taking as they comfortably accounted for Raheny in their entertaining Dublin U15 Division 1 encounter at a boggy St Anne's Park last Sunday morning.
In total, they had nine separate scorers on a morning in which they kicked just five wides, making full use of the opportunities that came their way in building a healthy lead before sealing the two points through late goals from Robert Twomey and the lively Daniel McNicholl.
The opposite applied to the hosts, who failed to take full advantage of the numerous goal chances that presented themselves, hitting the crossbar on two occasions in addition to being denied by a number of excellent saves from Lucan netminder Dylan Lacey.
Both sides struggled to initially adapt to the sticky conditions but it was Raheny who opened the scoring through a third-minute free from Darren Byrne before McNicholl restored parity with a clever point from an acute angle within two minutes.
The match continued in a similar vein with both sides showing an admirable attacking intent before Lucan took the lead through an excellent team score converted by Cathal Ó Maolmhana, while Raheny relied on another free from Byrne to stay in touch.
The movement of the Lucan attack was beginning to pierce holes in the home defence and Donal Smith regained their advantage before the sides were again on level terms when Brian Howard struck a fine point from distance.
The towering Jordan Delmar began to exert a strong influence on proceedings with a series of four frees interrupted only by a score from Raheny's Phil Roche, as Sars began to gain reward from the enterprising approach play of McNicholl and impressive wing-back Paul Crummy.
The visitors continued to dominate with three successive points from Graham Moore, Geoff Flanagan and Seán Twamley as they attacked the Raheny goal incessantly to open up a six-point lead by the 25th minute.
However, they lost their focus for the remainder of the half, allowing the hosts acres of space in which to attack and they would have conceded the opening goal but for a superb goalline save from corner-back Donal Flannery, denying Darren Cooper.
Within a minute, the excellent James O'Kane jigged through a number of tackles, only to be denied by an unorthodox but brave save by Lacey as the goalkeeper deflected O'Kane's attempt over the crossbar via his forehead.
Raheny were incessant at this point and further points by O'Kane and Byrne ensured the hosts trailed just by 0-10 to 0-8 after an absorbing opening 30 minutes.
Lucan made the most of their escapes as they resumed in telling fashion and, after doubling their lead through points from Smith and Flanagan, Daniel O'Neill slotted home after a goalmouth scramble for the game's opening goal on 37 minutes.
For all their possession, Raheny failed to add to their score during the third quarter as Lucan's goal lead a charmed life. They fell further behind when Delmar kicked two sublime frees as Sarsfields looked well set for their first league win of the year.
O'Kane finally gained reward for his monumental efforts with a crisp low drive across Lacey in the 47th minute, but substitute Twomey responded in kind with an accomplished finish four minutes later to effectively settle the contest.
Raheny's harsh lesson was concluded when McNicholl raced onto Twomey's sublime pass to steer a composed finish beyond Ryan Bradshaw, the 11-point winning margin highlighting the ruthless nature of the Lucan display.