Goals from Alex Gardiner, Tom O’Halloran and Michael Monaghan laid the foundations for Garrycastle’s two-point quarter-final success over Ratoath at Cusack Park, Mullingar today.
The home side survived a strong finish by the first-time Meath champions to prevail on a scoreline of 3-11 to 2-12.
Veteran Dessie Dolan, who finished with 0-3 to his name, set up Gardiner for his goal in the 6th minute and Garrycastle took a 1-9 to 0-5 lead into the break.
A goal from substitute Cian Rogers goal early in the second-half brought the Meath men back into contention but O’Halloran and Monaghan raised green flags in the 36th and 43rd minutes respectively to restore Garrycastle’s supremacy.
However, a cause of concern for manager Gary Dolan and his selectors ahead of next weekend’s semi-final date with Ballyboden St Enda’s will be the manner in which they allowed their opponents register 1-4 without reply in the final quarter.
Substitute Daithi McGowan found the back of the Garrycastle net in the stoppage time but Davy Byrne’s charges came up short.
Garrycastle - S Brennan; M Guiheen, J Donohue, M McCallon; D Harte, J Gaffey, G McCallon; J Barrett, J Dolan; A Monaghan (0-2), E Monaghan, M Monaghan (1-2); J Sheerin (0-2), A Gardiner (1-1), D Dolan (0-3f). Subs: G Heneghan (0-1f) for D Dolan, T O'Halloran (1-0) for A Monaghan, E Mulvihill for E Monaghan, J Nugent for M Monaghan, C Cosgrove for A Gardiner, J McGuire for D Harte.
Ratoath - S Duffy; S Brazil, C McGill, L Newe; C O Fearraigh, G McGowan, E Boyle; K McCabe, D Kelly; E Wallace (0-6, 5f), C Rooney (0-3), B O’Connor; J Wallace (0-1), C O’Brien, C Ahearne (0-1f). Subs: A Gerard for S Brazil, D McGowan (1-1) for B O’Connor, C Rogers (1-0) for C Ahearne, D McPartlin for S Duffy, B McGowan for C O’Brien.
Referee - B Cawley.Tweet