U-16s win South Mayo title. Mayo Gaels 4-9 St Geralds 2-6

November 8, 2018

Mayo Gaels 4-9 St Geralds 2-6
Our U-16 team won the South Mayo title for the fourth time and the first time since 1999 when they defeated St Geralds in Garrymore this evening on a final score line of 4-9 to 2-6. Despite the nine point winning margin it was a tough battle in which three first half goals from Kevin Lynch and two from Darren Prendergast setup the victory for the Gaels.

The Gaels opened the scoring with a free from Adam Gallagher after Brian Flynn was fouled. A great run and finish by midfielder Kevin Lynch registered the Gaels first goal after nine minutes. St Geralds responded with two points from play that were split by another Adam Gallagher free after Shane Lyons was fouled. Shane Lyons then got on the score board himself with a fine effort from play. Kevin Lynch and Brian Flynn combined to setup Darren Prendergast who was coolness personified when he audaciously chipped the advancing keeper to strike the second Gaels goal after sixteen minutes and stretch their lead to seven points, 2-3 to 0-2. St Geralds had their best period of the game in the next ten minutes when they totally dominated. This was mainly due to two incidents in which both Gaels midfielders received knocks. The second was a disgraceful off the ball challenge on Adam Gallagher which resulted in him having to move to corner forward for the remainder of the game. St Geralds broke through the Gaels defence, which had been watertight up to this due to fine defending by Lorcan Henry, Brian Heneghan and Padraig Prendergast, for a goal to cut the Gaels lead to four. They also had numerous point chances from frees and play but failed to convert any of them in what proved a crucial wasteful period. The vital score of the game came in first half injury time when Darren Prendergast again coolly hit his second goal of the game. Brian Flynn landed a fine point from play on the stroke of halftime to leave the Gaels 3-4 to 1-2 to the good.

The second half was an evenly contested affair with both sides kicking 1-4. The Gaels started where they left off in the first half and kicked two points from play, Kevin Lynch after a fine run and Adam Gallagher after good work by Padraig Prendergast and Brian Flynn. St Geralds responded with two points from play that were again split by an Adam Gallagher free after Shane Lyons was fouled. Goalie PJ Larkin made two fine saves in the fortieth and forty fifth minutes as St Geralds pressed for goals to get themselves back into the game. The relocated Adam Gallagher steadied the Gaels with two points from play after being setup by Kevin Lynch and the hard working Alan Morris and substitute Aaron Connor.  St Geralds continued to press for goals but fine defending by Fintan Canavan, Kevin Jordan and Liam Duggan kept them at bay. They managed a point from play and a break away goal to close the gap to seven with five minutes left, 3-9 to 2-5. The Gaels put the result beyond any doubt when Liam Duggan and Kevin Lynch combined to setup Adam Gallagher who skinned his man and finished to the net. St Geralds had the final say with a point in injury time to leave the final score 4-9 to 2-6.

A fine team performance by all the Gaels lads to land the South Mayo title to the joy of their large support in the stand. South Mayo chairman Mattie Joe Connolly presented the cup to captain Adam Gallagher who became the fourth Gaels player to receive the trophy following after Declan Staunton (1986), Anthony Byrne (1992) and Jonathan Morrin (1999). Well done to team mentors Jonathan Morrin, Derek Vahey, Danny Burke and Bryan Adams who had the team in fine shape.

The Gaels lads face a busy few weeks. The play the league final next Monday evening, August 9th, when they face Kiltane in McHale Park. They also face Moy Davitts or Ballyhaunis in the county semi final which has been provisionally fixed for Tuesday August 17th.

Mayo Gaels team: PJ Larkin, Lorcan Henry, Brian Heneghan, Kevin Jordan, Fintan Canavan, Padraig Prendergast, Kevin Lynch (1-1), Adam Gallagher (1-6, 3f), Alan Morris, Shane Lyons (0-1), Liam Duggan, Darren Prendergast (2-0), Brian Flynn (0-1). Subs. Aaron Connor for Padraig Prendergast (inj).