Battling Rathmore rally to claim Munster title

SPSL, Rathmore 2-6 Abbey CBS, Tipperary 0-8: They did it the hard way. Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra Rathmore were six points to one behind after 20 minutes and they also kicked 15 wides over the hour.

Battling Rathmore rally to claim Munster title

But, they persevered, and the big cheer that greeted the final whistle in Mallow yesterday, was in celebration of their first Munster Post Primary School’s U16½ B football title (Corn Liam Uí hUiginn).

After a fantastic start during which four different players got on the scoreboard, including two super efforts from midfielder Josh Ryan, Abbey CBS moved 0-6 to 0-1 ahead.

Amazingly, they lost their shape after that and while they threatened again near the end, once Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra found their feet, they enjoyed the bulk of possession.

Indeed, had the Kerry school taken better options, they would have been off the mark earlier than Conlin O’Leary’s point after 12 minutes. Then, a pair of goals coming up to half-time from centre-back Connie O’Connor and midfield player J J Herlihy put them in the driving seat. A John O’Leary free finished the scoring for the half, after which they led 2-2 to 0-6.

Shane O’Sullivan put the Rathmore team – who had former Kerry footballer John Crowley among their backroom setup - further ahead two minutes after the restart. When the Gneeveguilla player kicked two further frees, his side were in control. Sub Mark Ryan, who had only moments earlier come on the field, put them two goals clear, after good combination play with Jamie Brosnan and Ian Roche, 2-6 to 0-6.

Brian Friel’s surging runs were causing the Abbey defence problems. However, they were let off more than once because of erratic shooting. Abbey CBS did regroup and managed two late points from Andrew Vance and Josh Ryan, but the goal they needed – despite attempts from Vance and sub Ed Burke - never materialised.

Scorers for SPSL Rathmore:

C O’Connor and J J Herlihy (1-0 each), S O’Sullivan (0-3, two frees), C O’Leary, J O’Leary (free) and M Ryan (0-1 each).

Scorers for Abbey CBS:

J Ryan (0-4, three frees), A Vance (0-2), S Neville and S Ryan (0-1 each).

SPSL RATHMORE:

F Jacob (Glenflesk); T Fleming (Gneeveguilla), H Cronin (Gneeveguilla), D O’Callaghan (Rathmore); P Warren (Gneeveguilla, Capt), C O’Connor (Gneeveguilla), G Looney (Glenflesk); J J Herlihy (Gneeveguilla), J Brosnan (Gneeveguilla); C O’Leary (Gneeveguilla), B Friel (Rathmore), D Cronin (Rathmore); J O’Leary (Gneeveguilla), I Roche (Glenflesk), S O’Sullivan (Gneeveguilla).

Subs:

M Ryan (Rathmore) for C O’Leary (45), S Twomey (Knocknagree) for I Roche (52).

ABBEY ROVERS:

B Quinn (Arravale Rovers); C Donovan (Arravale Rovers), N Heffernan (Golden/Kilfeakle), M Moroney (Arravale Rovers); K Breen (Kickhams), S O’Brien (Éire Óg Annacarty), F Halligan (Arravale Rovers); J Ryan (Oola, Capt), D Byron (Galtee Rovers); C Maher (Arravale Rovers), S Neville (Lattin/Cullen), N Murphy Crowe (Arravale Rovers); A Vance (Emly), S Ryan (Galtee Rovers), Z O’Hanlon (Kickhams).

Subs:

E Burke (Galtee Rovers) for Z O’Halloran (Kickhams), D O’Dwyer (Arravale Rovers) for N Murphy Crowe (55).

Referee:

Michael Meade (Limerick).

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