Leinster club SFC: Rathnew shock St. Vincent's

November 12, 2017

Rathnew's Stephen Byrne with Jarlath Curley and Craig Wilson of St. Vincent's

Rathnew (Wicklow) 1-13

St. Vincent's (Dublin) 1-9

Rathnew caused a huge upset by beating reigning Dublin and provincial champions St. Vincent's in Aughrim to blow the Leinster club SFC wide open.

Former county star James Stafford's late goal sealed a sensational and fully deserved victory for the Wicklow champions who progress to a semi-final meeting with Moorefield of Kildare in a fortnight's time.

Seeking their fourth Leinster title in five years, St. Vincent's came into the tie as raging hot favourites, but knew they were in a battle when they trailed by a point (0-6 to 0-7) at half-time and by three early in the second half. A Mossy Quinn goal at the end of the third quarter propelled the visitors into a 1-9 to 0-10 lead, but that proved to be their last score of the game as the underdogs dominated the final quarter, with Stafford's brilliant goal five minutes from the end settling it.

Surprisingly, St. Vincent's captain Diarmuid Connolly failed to score from play on a day when Aughrim became a fortress once again.

Following Quinn's goal, Paul Merrigan and Stafford kicked points to level the scoring at 0-12 to 1-9 before Stafford landed the decisive blow. Fittingly, the veteran midfielder popped over the insurance point with a minute of normal time remaining to send the Rathnew faithful into raptures and one of the favourites for the Andy Merrigan Cup packing.

Rathnew - P Dignam; P Merrigan (0-1), D Power, J Snell; W Kavanagh, R O'Brien (0-1), E Glynn; J Stafford (1-2), T Smith; G Merrigan, L Glynn (0-2), D Staunton; S Byrne, M Doyle (0-4, 3f), E Doyle (0-3, 2f). Subs: J Manley for D Staunton, J Merrigan for S Byrne.

St. Vincent's - M Savage; M Concarr, J Curley, C Wilson; F Breathnach, G Brennan, L Sheehy; L Galvin, D Murphy; G Burke (0-1), S Carthy (0-1), Cormac Diamond; E Varley (0-2), D Connolly (0-1f), T Quinn (1-3, 0-2f, 0-1'45). Subs: E Fennell for L Galvin, R Trainor (0-1) for Cormac Diamond, J McCusker for G Brennan, J Feeney for D Murphy, T Diamond for G Burke.

Referee - D Gough.



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