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SFC Group 1

posted 10 Sep 2018, 13:02 by Athlone GAA
Athlone 0-12 The Downs 3-12

Our seniors' bid to reach the knockout stages of this year's senior championship suffered a setback when they were well beaten by The Downs in this Group 1 Round 4 clash played in Cusack Park on Saturday evening.

Athlone actually started brightly, but missed several chances to take the lead and instead it was The Downs who opened the scoring after five minutes.  Another Downs point was followed by their opening goal, before John Connellan opened Athlone's account, but three more Downs points gave them a seven-point lead midway through the half.  A pair of John Connellan frees, either side of a Shane Allen point, brought Athlone back into the game, but they were dealt a further blow when they conceded a second goal.  Diarmuid Martin and Alan Gaughan added a pair of well-taken scores late in the half, but Athlone still went in at the break trailing by seven points, 2-7 to 0-6.

The Downs stretched their lead with a point straight from the restart, but Athlone then enjoyed their best period of the game and fine points from the returning Ray Connellan (0-2), Daniel Reid and Shane Allen reduced the gap to four.  Unfortunately, however, Athlone missed chances to reduce the gap even further and The Downs regained the initiative and three consecutive points put daylight between the sides again.  Despite late scores from Daniel Reid and Alan Gaughan, Athlone never looked like getting the goal they needed to get themselves back into the game and instead it was The Downs who added a third deep into stoppage time to leave the final score 3-12 to 0-12 in their favour.

This result means that Athlone's final group match versus Killucan will be winner take all clash, with the victor taking the last available quarter-final spot from Group 1.  Throw-in for this crucial game will be at 6pm this Saturday, September 15th in Moate and all support will be greatly appreciated.

Athlone:  Conor Devaney, Matthew Darling, Damien Kelly, James Finlass, Jordan Marshment, Noel Mulligan, Shane Allen (0-2), Alan Gaughan (0-2), Darren Magee, Kieran Colclough, Ray Connellan (0-2), Stephen Ward, Ryan Gaffey, Jack Quinn, John Connellan (0-3) Subs Used:  Diarmuid Martin (0-1), Daniel Reid (0-2), Tom Egan, John Stapleton, Fergal Murray.