Milltown/Castlemaine 1-10

Austin Stacks 2-09

Kerry County Senior Football League, Division 2

Milltown was the scene yesterday in Round 8 of the Credit Union County Senior Football League Division 2 as the hosts took on table toppers Austin Stacks. It seen the return of former boss Wayne Quillinan who managed the team a few years back and reached the Quarter-Finals of a County Senior Football Championship and is now back in charge of his home club Austin Stacks.  Milltown/Castlemaine came into the clash on the back of an 11 point win away to Kenmare whilst Austin Stacks came into the game knowing they were already 1st on 13 points & would almost certainly guarantee one of the three promotion spots with a win in a venue that they traditionally have found tricky down the years.  A fitting tribute was paid to club stalwart Michael Dennehy prior to throw-in with a minutes silence and also a lovely few words in the match programme to commemorate and honour Mike for his work down the years both in the GAA and the local community.

Great start for Milltown-Castlemaine

Milltown/Castlemaine got off to a rip-roaring start as Donal Dennehy caught the ball from throw-in and pointed fittingly from 30 yards to give the hosts an early advantage.  Gavin Horan who was a menace all day to the away sides defence cut through Austin Stacks on the first occasion in the 5th minute and fed attacking half back David Roche who palmed to the net in a composed fashion.  Gavin Horan had his first point from Centre-Forward in the 11th minute after once again cutting the Stacks defence to shreds with his lightning pace.  Jack McCarthy from an acute angle extended the lead out to 1-3 to 0-0 by the 14th minute with a free from 21 yards before the away side finally got on the scoreboard in the 16th minute when their outstanding forward for the day Darragh O'Brien stood up and pointed to get the away side moving.   Shane Carroll who subsequently had to go off at half-time from a pointed effort from play and a brilliant goal from midfielder Greg Horan after a surging run had Austin Stacks right back in the contest by the 20th minute at 1-3 to 1-2.  Gavin Horan with another fisted effort which sailed over the posts was replied to in kind by a Darragh O'Brien free to keep matters tight.  Donal Dennehy in the 25th minute through a free from 14 yards in the corner seen the hosts climb to 2 points ahead heading towards the interval however Austin Stacks had the final say of the half as Wing-Back Pa McCarthy chipped in with a brilliant score from play to leave Milltown/Castlemaine one point ahead at half-time at 1-5 to 1-4.  The impressive Gavin McKenna and Damian Murphy in the full back line for the hosts also deserve creditable mention for numerous turnovers and interceptions all throughout the opening half.

Late frees make the difference

The second half saw the wind subside and so both sides were on a level playing field in all ways. The early minutes saw strong defence on both sides with many turnovers in possession. Damian Murphy, who had played over 80 minutes in the junior final on the previous Monday night, was invaluable in defence, making a vital interception despite being off balance in the process. At this stage, MC introduced Ciaran O’ Connor, Jerome Flynn and Craig Counihan onto the field of play over the next few minutes. It took until the 10th minute of the second half for the first score to be registered and it was off the boot of Fergal Hallissey who was using his height and strength to much avail.  The 19th minute saw Pa Wrenn level matters with a super point having received an equally excellent pass from David Roche. The turning point of the game came in the 21st minute, when Fergal Hallissey palmed the ball into the M/C net and so gave the visitors a 3 point lead, 1/08 to 0/08.  MC were unfortunate to lose Brendan Delaney to injury having earlier lost Jonathan O’ Sullivan to a back injury.  Jamie O’ Shea popped over a free in the 24th minute to reduce the deficit to just 2 points. Stephen Roche, Kieran O Carroll and Pa Wrenn worked tremendously hard -with their  determination resulting in a 45 which Jack McCarthy popped over in the 27th minute. The score was now 1/08 to 10 points and just under 3 minutes left. Could the home-side level matters once again and force the game into extra time?  Man of the Match and captain Fergal Hallissey made that very difficult with a further point in the 28th minute to give Beaufort a 2 point lead heading into the dying moments of the game. David Roche fed Gavin McKenna a great ball and he duly popped it over to leave just one point between the sides. However, time ran out and when Peter Lyons blew the full-time whistle, it was Beaufort who was to receive the Dermot Twiss Memorial Cup. Final Score: Beaufort:1/09, M/C:11 points.  Congratulations to both panels on a truly wonderful game of football. Thanks to their  management teams and trainers for all their work and commitment.