Moycullen stepped up their impressive championship run in Pearse Stadium on Saturday when they dispatched a lauded Caltra side. The All-Ireland Intermediate Champions outthought and outfought their north Galway opponents in a fine 60 minute display.
Their four point win came despite the fact that they trailed at half-time by three. The sublime Michael Meehan kicked four of his side’s scores with typical panache. Shooting on the whole was often wayward however. Indeed, six wides were registered before either team broke the deadlock. Nevertheless, the game remained an entertaining, open contest which was high on endeavour . Moycullen stayed in touch thanks to scores from Paul Clancy (2 ) and Ruairi Grant.
Yet Clancy’s fortune dramatically changed when he was sent off on 35 minutes by referee Teddy Kerins. Though Enda Meehan would eventually join him for an early shower, Moycullen still had to play the majority of the second at a distinct disadvantage. But Clancy’s harsh dismissal galvanised his side and they drew level mere seconds later. Gareth Bradshaw’s quick thinking allowed him to expertly goal from a quick free kick, some 25 yards out.
Far from relenting, Caltra reasserted their lead with two successive, well-taken points from Paddy Birch and captain Paul Gately. One suspected a grandstand finish and it was always apparent that a lead of just two points entering a final quarter fraught with danger was not going to be enough. A barnstorming Moycullen performance was testament to this as they finished immaculately with six unanswered points.
The all-important plethora of scores came from Conor Bohan (2 ), Gareth Bradshaw (2 ), Ruairi Grant and Mark Lydon. Fittingly they came from players who had all excelled throughout the tie. Their efforts were complimented by heroics in defence from the likes of Sean Bradshaw and Donal Burns. With fine performances littered around the field combined with a fine team work ethic Moycullen were value for their win and the talented and youthful side have certainly emerged as a team to watch in the forthcoming stages of the championship.
Moycullen: S Friel; D Burns, D Lee, S O Fatharta; H Lydon, P Clancy (0-2, 2fs ), B Hanley; M Lydon (0-1 ), G Bradshaw (1-2, 1-2fs ); R Grant (0-2 ), G Clancy, T Higgins; S Bradshaw, B O Fatharta, C Bohan (0-2 ).
Caltra: K Kilroy; D Hanlon, E Meehan, B Kilroy; T Meehan (0-1 ), O Kelly, P Gately (0-1 ); D Cunniffe, J Galvin; P Birch (0-1 ), C Kilroy (0-1 ), M O’Neill; M Kelly, M Meehan (0-4, 2fs ), M Cunniffe. Subs: K Gavin for M Cunniffe, 38mins; B Laffey for C Kilroy, 51mins; S Meehan for P Birch 53mins.
Ref: T Kerins.