Duleek Bellewstown 1-10 Castletown 1-5
Duleek Bellewstown got their 2018 championship campaign off to a successful start with a well deserved 5 point success over Castletown in Syddan on Sunday afternoon. Having being reduced to 14 in the second quarter Duleek Bellewstown produced a strong third quarter which provided the foundation for their victory.
The first half was a very tense affair with little or no continuity to the football being played and with a high number of turnovers as both sides sought the upper hand. The encounters were hard and fair as they should be for championship.
From the throw in Castletown went on the attack and were a point to the good after 3 minutes with a point from play from Meath panellist Kevin Ross. John Flood responded in kind 2 minutes later with a score off his left foot and when Stephen Nolan added 2 points from frees it looked like Duleek Bellewstown were gaining the upper hand as the game entered the second quarter
Matters changed when a high ball was fielded in the square by the Castletown full forward and despite the best efforts of the defense the referee deemed a foul had been committed and awarded a penalty. This was an opportunity for Castletown but Ross's shot clipped the outside of the post and was waved wide. Rather than despair Castletown then produced their best spell and two points from a Kevin Ross Free and the left half back with a fine effort brought them level with 5 minutes to half time. Duleek Bellewstown's cause was not helped either by a straight red in the 20th minute which reduced their number to 14.
As in the first half Castletown opened strongly and had the opening point, again from Ross, after 30 seconds which was responded to with another John Flood free almost immediately to draw the sides level for the third time. With the man advantage it looked as if Castletown would take control as their spare man was consistently in the clear. But every time the attacked up field the Duleek Bellewstown half line stopped them in their tracks and began driving forward scoring 1-5 from the 10th to the 25th minute. Flood from a free in the 10th and Brian Moore with a long range effort in the 11th got the scoring moving.
But it was the pressuring of the Castletown kick out which yielded most dividends. This pressure resulted in the Castletown keeper receiving a yellow card for a late tackle on Stephen Nolan and from the next kick out a defensive error saw Jamie Crosby being hauled back by the keeper after a fumble around the D and the keeper saw his second yellow. Flood pointed the resultant free to put 3 between the sides as the game entered the final quarter.
Castletown responded with another point from Ross and the defining score came on 20minutes when Nolan received a pinpoint pass from sideline kick at the edge of the large square and when he slipped the tackle there was only one result as he drove the ball to the back of the net. Further points from Peter Collins Shane Crosby and another Nolan free had extended the gap to 8 as the games entered the final phase.
Castletown to their credit kept going and were rewarded with 2 minutes to go when a lofted free into the Duleek Bellewstown goalmouth resulted in a bit of hand tennis and the ball was deemed to have crossed the line.
Duleek Bellewstown will be happy to have gotten over this first hurdle and another examination will be eagerly awaited in the next round when they face Oldcastle.
Duleek Bellewstown: A Dowling, D Teeling, D Moore, K Mc Cann, S Crosby (0-1), R Clarke, S Mc Ardle, E Byrne, J Flaherty, J Mc Donnell, J Flood (0-4) , B Moore (0-1), J Crosby, S Nolan (1-4), G Reilly. Subs: P Collins for S McArdle, M Dowling for D Teeling. J Brannigan for E Byrne.
Castletown 1-5 Duleek Bellewstown 1-10
Castletown failed to get off the mark in the first round of the IFC when they played Duleek Bellewstown in Syddan.
Castletown were on the scoreboard with a point from play after almost three minutes. Duleek Bellewstown scored three points before Kevin Ross got his second point from a free after 20 minutes. A missed opportunity of a goal chance fell to Ross as he failed to convert a penalty. Castletowns last score of the half came from Robert Hoey with seven minutes remaining. Duleek were reduced to 14 men just before the half time whistle. The half time score was 0-03 points a piece.
Within a minute of the second half resuming Castletown scored their fourth point and were ahead but this lead didn't last long as Duleek Bellewstown began to come more into the game and take their scores they raced into a three point lead midway through the second half. Castletown were also reduced to 14 men when Jonathan Ginnity got a second yellow card. Castletown failed to register their next score until the fourty eight minute which came from a point from play from Declan Cribbin.
The eventual winners scored 1-04 but with time nearly up Castletown got a consolation goal straight from a Darren Finney free. This turned out to be the last result of the game.
Castletown: Jonathan Ginnitty, Noel Smyth, Gerard Farrelly, Evan Hoey, Stephen Duffy, Shane Hoey, Jamie McMahon, Damien Ginnitty, Robert Hoey (0-01),Kevin Ross (0-03 (1f)), Declan Cribbin (0-01), Darren Finney (1-00), Barry Smith, Tommy Smith and Wayne Donegan. Subs: William Bellew for Noel Smyth, Paul Smith for Jonathan Ginnitty, Francis Hoey for Robert Hoey, Mark Kelly for Wayne Donegan