Whitehall Colmcille (Football-away-28/2/15)

posted Mar 3, 2015, 3:26 PM by raheny gaa   [ updated Mar 4, 2015, 6:41 AM by Raheny GAA PRO ]
Raheny U9s 

 Venue:            Ellen field
 Throw In: 12pm
 No. of Raheny Teams: 3
 No. of Opponent Teams: 3
 WeatherBright & mild(ish)

Raheny Lions

Report By: Padraig Kent

Mentors: Paul Nolan, Brendan Shovlin, Joanne Kerrisk and Padraig Kent

SquadRyan Kent, Jamie Nolan, Conor Watters, Luke Kelly, Jack Codd, Cathal Shovlin, Mathew Grant, Ciaran Kerrisk, Adam Roberts, Luke Kelly and Adam Robinson.

The Raheny Lions took a trip over to Whitehall for an early lunch time meeting with Colmcille’s last Saturday.  Within the first minute, it was clear to most spectators who were on the menu.   We had noticed it in training some weeks earlier and we awaited its arrival on match day with a sense of excitement.  We realised that Colmcille’s were about to find themselves in a perfect storm of individual and collective improvement across this group of young men.  The first point was made look easy by Luke.  It started from a perfectly weighted pass into space in front of the opposition’s goal from Ciarán.  The defender thought he had the measure of Luke, but he darted into the space and collected the ball beautifully.   His pace took him away from the defender and with a half turn he put his boot under the ball to lift it high between the posts for 3 pts.  So as to show the first was no accident he got on the end of another one this time delivered courtesy of Mathew Grant.  With a little shimmy the defender was beaten all ends up allowing Luke to smile as he lifted it high between the posts.  Raheny’s focus was now on Colmcille’s kick outs. Forwards and midfielders were almost in the oppositions shorts with the backs covering the space in between and although the kick outs were accurate the attention of the Raheny forwards left the opposition unable to hold them.  Conor Watters stepped up next and in my opinion this young man went on to be not only the man of the match but put in his very best performance to date in the Maroon shirt that I’ve seen.  He took the ball from deep in mid field and stepped past two defenders like they were training cones and delivered another fine effort over the bar from 15 metres.  Luke liked the first two so much he came back for another point 30 seconds later.  Jamie proved that it wasn’t a one man show up front by taking the next 2 points in a row.  Again these efforts materialised from tenacious tackling followed really solid decision making by the Raheny boys.  Mathew had been torturing the opposition in Midfield and after another turnover he found himself with enough space to blast another point  from 15 metres.  When Alex came on, the Colmcille defenders must have felt they were in the wrong end of a shooting gallery.  The improvement in this young man has been immense since his debut after the blitz last year.  Selfless running for his team mates coupled with natural speed and ability on the ball allowed him his first opportunity on goal within minutes.  He didn’t waste it either.  Jamie was in a rush to get all his scores in the first half as a birthday party beckoned, didn’t disappoint, with another fine shot straight over the bar.  Conor has discovered the shoulder charge and how useful it is for extracting the ball from the oppositions grip.  Like the anaesthetic before the extraction they didn’t even realise he had the ball by the time he was drilling it into the bottom corner of the opposition’s goal.  The first half ended 26 points to nil and the Lions couldn’t wait to get at them again in the 2nd period.  Head coach Shovlin warned that they would be playing up hill and into the wind for the 2nd period.  He also warned that the opposition were no slouches and they were going to come at us with everything they had.

They did just that and proved they had some fine footballers opening their scoring with a great point followed by a goal without reply from Raheny.  Adam Roberts kick outs were crucial.  His delivery every time was surgical.  Ryan’s tackling was, as per usual deftly timed and heart breaking for the opposition.  Adam Roberts came back to defence to lend a hand and Cathal went up front while Ciaran slotted into his most familiar position in the middle.  The boys seemed to go up another gear at this point with Alex continuing his adventure from the first half blasting home a goal followed quickly by a deftly taken point over the bar.  Ciaran found space and got himself on the score sheet with a fine point.  Jack had little to do in the first half and went into the frontline in the second.  He didn’t put a foot wrong and showed why we missed him so much in January.  His cool head and deceptive speed made his point look easy but then his passing and running made more scores for his team mates look easy as well.  Conor was back on the score sheet next with a fine point and again if his finishing was impressive it was nothing compared to his tackling. Size didn’t matter, his shoulder didn’t discriminate.  He broke up more attacks in midfield before they threatened our back line.  More often after one of his shoulder charges the opposition found themselves running sideways with the ball in the air only to be gathered into his hands heading in the opposite direction.  Cathal was a revelation in the frontline finishing the scoring with an excellent goal.  It may have been the inspiration from his number one supporter entrenched behind the oppositions goal, but again his running for his team mates and his excellent passing coupled with his incessant tackling made everyone’s job easier and his goal well deserved.    There was so much right about this game for us.  Our defence was rock solid and when we got the ball we appeared to have so many options with everyone working hard to make space.  Our kick passing coupled with some excellent decision making was certainly the heart breaker for the opposition, allowing the ball do the work, and making the finishing seem easier than it actually was.  The final score was only one reflection of the difference between the two teams, with Raheny with 4 goals and 11 points to Colmcille’s 1 goal and 4.  Raheny Abú!

Raheny Tigers

Report By: Niall Watters

Mentors: Niall Watters, Donnie Rossi and John Strain

Squad: Mathew Dowdall, Dylan Strain, Mathew Brigdale, James Pitts, Joe Bonar, Tiernan O'Brien, Evan Wynne, Sam Mitchell, James Pitts, Luke Morgan and Johnny Baldwin.

The Tigers took to the field in Whitehall in confident mood following their recent show in football against Sylvesters a fortnight ago. 

The first half was very tight, but the lads fought for every ball and looked to be really enjoying their football. At half time, it was one goal to Colmcilles and one point (worth three) to Raheny thanks to great play by Evan. It really was a game of two halves: Raheny unleashed the inner Tiger in the second half following a motivational half time team talk by Donnie 'hurry it up Ref!' Rossi. 

In the second half, Sam (man of the match) Mitchell bossed the whole park with unbelievable tackles and hassling of the Colmcille lads as soon as they got the ball. Evan was all over the park; Johnny played a blinder up front; Dylan and Luke were the imperious defenders; James, Joe and Mathew B. pulled their backs all over the place making space for our midfielders; and, Tiernan, Cian and Mathew were the marauding attackers.

In the event, this second half performance allowed the Tigers to run out winners by 19 points to 7 (2 skill points for Whitehall in the second half). Points were scored all impressively high over the centre of the bar by Evan (2), Mathew D., Tiernan, Cian, Sam got a skill point for a block and there were goals from Johnny and Mathew D. It was great to see the smiles and high fives from the boys following a brilliant and the most impressive of their recent performances. Well done boys, a truly great performance.

Raheny Giants

Report By: Tony O'Grady

Mentors: Tony Lawless, Kevin Fitzpatrick and Tony O'Grady

SquadMatt Lawless, Ultan Fitzpatrick, Cormac Baldwin, Dan O'Grady, John Broderick, Colin McAweeney, Luke McCullough, Max Osborne and Martin Bishop

The Raheny Giants made the short trip to Whitehall’s pitch in Ellenfield on Saturday and served up an exhibition of top-quality football. The Giants had the wind on their backs for the first half and used it to their advantage with a series of accurate balls from midfield into the forward line of Matt and Cormac who both picked off some lovely points. The midfield partnership of John, Luke and Martin combined very well to neutralise their opponents and any balls that got through to the Raheny defence were mopped up by Ultan and Dan. Ultan was strong in the tackle and made some telling interceptions when it looked like a score was on the cards for Whitehall. Max was accurate with his kick-outs and when moved out of goal showed great skill in laying off a lovely hand pass to set up another attack. As Whitehall had only 8 players for the game it meant that Raheny were required to use a rolling substitute and when Colin came on for Max he made an immediate impact with his strong running and determination to win dirty ball.

The game turned out to be a one-sided affair and although your reporter did not keep track of the scores it was in the region of 2-12 to 1-2 to the Giants. What was most pleasing about this game for the mentors was the number of skill points achieved through blocking. The Giants racked up an impressive 8 skill points with almost all team members contributing to this total. This is a skill Conor and the Mentor group have been working on for a while and it was great to see the boys execute it so effectively in a match situation.