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SFC Group 1: Athlone v Killucan

posted 29 Jul 2017, 14:41 by Athlone GAA
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Athlone 0-15 Killucan 1-14  

A stirring comeback fell just short as our senior team were made pay for a poor first half performance when they were defeated by Killucan in their opening senior championship group 1 game, played in Moate on Sunday evening.

After Ryan Gaffey had given Athlone a good start with a point from his first touch in senior championship football, the North Westmeath men took over and kicked five unanswered points, before John Connellan finally got Athlone’s second score after 20 minutes.  The sides then exchanged points, Athlone’s score coming from Mickey Greene, before Killucan's Killian Doyle got what was to prove to be the game’s crucial score with a well-taken goal.  Two more Killucan points from play made the score 1-8 to 0-3 in their favour at half time and left Athlone with a mountain to climb in the second period.

Athlone started the second half brightly with points from a Ryan Gaffey free and Mickey Greene, but two points in a minute restored the Saffrons’ eight-point advantage with 10 minutes of the second half played.  Just as it looked like the game might be getting away from them, Athlone stepped up a gear and kicked six points (from Alan Gaughan, Mickey Greene, John Connellan, Ryan Gaffey) to one between the 40th and 50th minutes to reduce the gap to just a goal with 10 minutes still to play.  Just when it looked like Athlone had all the momentum, Killucan were able to lift the siege and added two points to put daylight between the sides again.  With time running out, Athlone dug deep again and excellent scores from Noel Mulligan, John Egan and John Connellan brought them back to within a point with two minutes to play.  Again, however, Killucan were able to break away and another point meant that Athlone needed a goal, but, unfortunately, they were unable to create the necessary opportunity, and Killucan held on to win on a scoreline of 1-14 to 0-15.

The next game for Athlone is against neighbours Garrycastle in Tang on Saturday evening at 7.30pm, in what will be a must-win game for both sides.

Athlone:  Conal Sheeran, Eoin Maher, Damien Kelly, Fergal Murray, Noel Mulligan (0-2), Jordan Marshment, Stephen Ward, Alan Gaughan (0-2), Daniel Reid, Dylan Lynch, Paul Bannon, John Egan (0-1), Ryan Gaffey (0-3), Mickey Greene (0-3), John Connellan (0-4) Subs Used:  Danny Lynam, Fionn Dowd, David Fagan.

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