Gaeil Colmcille 1-07
A change of venue seen Dunshaughlin and Gaeil Colmcille turning at the hospital to find themselves back in HQ Pairc Tailteann Navan for both teams first outing of the year in the Meath SFC.
Dunshaughlin were showing some impressive form leading into the match with them unbeaten in the league and continued where they left off with them finding themselves 5 points up after 10 mins with Gaeil Colmcille not managing to get on the scoreboard yet. A converted Cathal O'Dwyer free was backed up by two lovely Shane Gallogly scores with Ben Duggan also getting in on the scoring that seen his long range effort sail over the bar. Cathal O'Dwyer was on hand to convert another free after 10 mins that seen Tadhg O'Dushlaine being fouled before Gaeil Colmcille got their first score of the game after 14 mins. Trim resident Cathal O'Dwyer had been enjoying a great spell lately with frees and he did not disappoint after 18 mins to convert another free following some good work from Shale Gallogly. This however was to be the black and ambers last score of the half that seen a rampant Gaeil Colmcille account for a very impressive 1-04 in a 8 minute spell that seen the men from North Meath remarkably lead by 2 points with some deadly accuracy from corner forwards Seamus Mattimoe & Brian Hanlon as referee Parrick Coyle blew for half time.
Dunshaughlin started the second half as they began the first with Cathal O'Dwyer getting his first score from play with Ben Duggan playing a key role before a converted Brian Hanlon free and a fine score from Seamus Mattimoe have them now leading by 3 points after 36 mins gone in the match. A glorious Fergus Toolan score from way out the pitch seemed to kick start Dunshaughlin back into the tie with a converted Cathal O'Dwyer free on 49 mins now just had 1 point between the teams. Both teams were now very evenly matched but Dunshaughlin manager Kit Henry still had an ace up his sleeve to play with Conor Devereux being introduced into the match a minute later that seen the biggest entertainer in Meath football go on a scoring spree that seen Devereux getting 3 majestic scores in a row to now have the black and amber lead by 2 points with 8 mins to play. Veteran campaigner Ray Maloney was also having a big say on the game and a trademark Maloney score on the run now had Dunshaughlin leading by a goal with all the momentum as the game entered its last 5 minutes. Dunshaughlin substitute Mark Devaney was also proving how important a role subs play with him starting to get his hands on some good possession and it was Devaney's own version of the 'hand of god' aid in a stage of play that seen Cathal O'Dwyer point yet again from a free before midfielder John Crimmons fresh from RTE get the final score of the game in injury time that seen Dunsaughlin run out 5 point winners. This was just the start Dunshaghlin needed after falling to the hands of Gaeil Colmcile in the corresponding fixture last year and were served very well in defence by Michael Ahern and Tadh O'Dushlaine while Ray Maloney and big Jack Crimmons were the dominant duo in the middle of the field. Fergus Toolans work rate and support play on the day was phenomenal while Cathal O'Dwyer was deadly in front of the goals from frees and from play. However when the game was in the balance it was a focused, committed deadly accurate Conor Devereux who made all the difference and gets my vote for man of the match.
Dunshaughlin - S.Clusker, D.Ormsby, A.Doyle, M.Ahern, D.Dunne, C.King, T.O'Dushlaine, J.Crimmons(0-01), R.Maloney(0-01), F.Toolan(0-01), B.Duggan(0-01), S.Gallogly(0-02), C.O'Dwyer(0-06), F.Delaney. Subs - C.Devereux(0-03) for T.Dowd, M.Devaney for S.Gallogly