ACFL Dunshaughlin 1-10 Simonstown 0-13

November 8, 2018

Simonstown and Dunshaughlin played out a draw in the second round of the A League in a chilly Simonstown. The last two league fixtures between these two teams have resulted in large wins for the side that was playing at home and that trend looked to continue when Simonstown raced into a seven point lead after 15 minutes. Seamus Kenny, with his head shaved after a charity event with fellow Meath players, pulled the strings from the 40 in the opening exchanges creating openings for Shane O’Rourke and Shane O’Neill to point the Navan side into that 0-7 to 0-0 lead. The black and ambers slowly got back into the game with a glorious score from Paddy McHale in between pointed frees from Martin Reilly and Niall Kelly leaving just four points between the sides approaching half time. An O’Neill score left the scoreline 0-8 to 0-3 at half time.

McHale and O’Rourke traded points at the start of the second half. Both scores were sublime efforts from tight angles out on the right. But with David Crimmins now dominating from centre back, Dunshaughlin then had a purple patch which eventually left them a point ahead after 12 minutes of the second half. First of all Conor Devereux pointed after a great run. Then a long ball from Tommy Johnson was palmed down by McHale into the path of substitute Niall Murphy. The youngster shot brilliantly with his left foot into the bottom corner of the Simonstown net. Buoyed by this, further points from Reilly and Murphy left Dunshaughlin ahead for the first time in the game. Murphy who was causing the Simonstown defence all sorts of problems cancelled out a Kenny point for Simonstown with another point on 16 minutes. O’Neill levelled again but Ray Maloney and a Reilly free left Dunshaughlin two points ahead with two minutes to go. But they could not hold on as two late points from Simonstown and the shrill blast of the final whistle from Jack Gordon meant that two sides had to share the points.
It was a spirited comeback for Dunshaughlin with Niall ‘Minnie’ Murphy the undoubted hero. But there were also great performances from Kevin Ward, Cathal O’Dwyer, David Crimmins and Conor Devereux. Dunshaughlin – Ronan Gogan, Tommy Johnson, Anthony Johnson, Kevin Ward, Emmet Staunton, David Crimmins, Caomhin King, Ray Maloney (0-1), John Crimmins, Cathal O’Dwyer, Trevor Dowd, Conor Devereux (0-1), Eamonn Bowe, Paddy McHale (0-2), Martin Reilly (0-3, 2 frees). Substitues: Niall Kelly (0-1) for John Crimmins, Niall Murphy (1-2) for Dowd, Eoin Hagarty for Staunton, Conor Staunton for Bowe, Michael Johnson for McHale