Senior vs St.Pats Louth
Sunday, 8th November 2015

Result: 1-08 to 0-07

Boden made to work in Drogheda

Ballyboden St Enda’s progressed to the semi final of the Leinster Senior Football Championship after a hard fought four point win over Louth champions St Patrick’s in Drogheda on Sunday. Conditions were far from ideal on a wet and blustery day in the Wee County, contributing to an error strewn and low scoring game. Colm Basquel’s 35th minute proved decisive as Boden were pushed all the way by the massive underdogs. From early on it was clear that the Louth side were intent on frustrating Boden, setting up with 13 men inside their own half for large parts of the opening half. Playing against a strong wind in the opening half, Boden struggled to carve out scoring opportunities early on against their defensive minded opponents. When they did create chances, Boden’s accuracy was found wanting as Conal Keaney and Declan O’Mahoney shot wide early on. St Pat’s centre forward Karl White put the Louth side ahead when he took advantage of some slack Boden marking and curled over an easy score. He soon doubled their lead with an easy free after eight minutes. Midfielder Paddy Keenan’s wind assisted monster score from well outside the 45 gave the Louth champions a three point lead with nearly a quarter of an hour gone. It had been a scrappy opening quarter, with handling errors all over the pitch and with space at a premium. Similar to St Vincent’s in last week’s Dublin decider, Boden had worryingly failed to score in the first 15 minutes of the game, but finally did so in the 16th minute when Keaney turned his man and curled over a left footed effort. Keaney’s score signalled a period of dominance for Boden, during which they drew level with two Andrew Kerin scores, one from play and one from a free. It was during this spell that Boden created the only goal chance of the half. Basquel, Aran Waters and Sean Gibbons combined well to send Michael Darragh Macauley through on goal, but Pats’ goalkeeper Sean Connor smothered his effort well. The Louth side had the last say of the half in injury time, when corner forward Daniel O’Connor curled over nicely from an acute angle to send them in leading at the break, albeit by the narrowest of margins.

But a one point deficit after playing against such a strong breeze was by no means a disaster for Boden and there was plenty of optimism among the Boden faithful that they would kick on when playing with the breeze in the second half. And that is exactly what they did in the early minutes of the half. Kerin first brought them level with a free, and from the resultant kickout Boden got the game’s only three-pointer. Connor’s short kickout was telegraphed and the razor sharp Darren O’Reilly beat Pat’s corner back Kevin Toner to the ball. O’Reilly fed Basquel, who fended off a challenge before finishing brilliantly to the top corner from the edge of the large square. Their goal was nearly cancelled out instantly, when Boden ‘keeper Conor Dooley, deputising for Paul Durcan, allowed an underhit free to squirm between his legs. Somehow the ball held up in the muddy goalmouth and failed to cross the line and Boden averted the danger. Boden failed to build on the momentum the goal had given them and the game descended into a 15 minute lull, during which there was only one score, a Paddy Keenan free that cut the deficit to two points. It was a stop start period where whistle happy referee Patrick Maguire penalised minor infractions on both sides and killed the games flow. Boden seemed to be tiring as the game went on and it seemed as though their tough schedule was catching up on them. This was their fourth consecutive weekend of championship action and all of those games had been physically demanding. Kerin gave Boden a bit of breathing space with eight minutes remaining when he pointed a simple free to stretch the lead to a goal. Paddy Keenan and Kerin then swapped frees as the game neared a conclusion, with Boden keeping the hosts at arm’s length. Keenan thought he’d equalised in the last minute when he rifled into the net after a quickly taken free. But the referee was not ready for it to be taken and the goal was disallowed, much to the frustration of the home fans. In the end Keenan had to settle for a point, making it a two point game as the game entered injury time. Conal Keaney settled Boden nerves when he curled over a great score from just inside the 45, and Keaney sealed a Boden victory when he collected Connor’s kickout and thumped over a huge 50 yard score. It was a workmanlike performance from Boden, who did just enough in extremely testing conditions. However, it looks like Andy McEntee will have to sweat over the fitness of midfielder Declan O’Mahoney who limped off at half time. Injuries are beginning to mount for Boden, who lost Ryan Basquel to a broken jaw last week. For now though, Boden have the chance to recuperate before their semi final showdown with St Loman’s of Mullingar in two weeks time.

BALLYBODEN ST ENDA'S: C Dooley; B Dwan, S Hiney, S Clayton; S O'Connor, D Nelson, A Waters; MD Macauley, D O'Mahoney; S Gibbons, C Basquel (1-00), D O'Reilly; C Keaney (0-03), S Molony, A Kerin (0-05 4f). Subs: D McCabe for O'Mahoney (HT), R McDaid for O'Connor (38), D Davy for Gibbons (47), C McCormack for Molony (49), S Durkin for O'Reilly (54).


ST PAT'S: S Connor; K Toner, Patrick Kirk, Darren O'Hanlon; O Zambouglou, E Lafferty, E Breen; P Keenan (0-04, 3f), E O'Connor; D O’Connor (0-01), K White (0-02, 1f), A McCann; D Lafferty, C Grogan, D Finnegan. Subs: R Murphy for Zambouglou (55), A O'Connor for D Lafferty (61).


Referee: Patrick Maguire (Longford).