AFL DIVISION TWO
St Sylvester’s 4-6
Kilmacud Crokes 1-13
ST SYLVESTER’S began life under new manager Paul Clarke and selectors Keith Galvin and Seamas Hynes in four-star fashion as they saw off Kilmacud Crokes in AFL2 at Broomfield on Sunday.
The new management team handing debuts to Sean Daly and Dan Deneher while minor player Josh Bannon was also part of the panel as they gave youth their head.
Returning to senior action were Mark Finnerty, Mark Hazley and Pearse Gibney, giving the squad a fresh outlook for the campaign.
Playing with the wind in the first half, the Malahide side had some wayward shooting and failed to capitalise on some good possession and support play. Mark Finnerty’s goal showed some good anticipation to finish a hopeful ball in his direction to the net.
Otherwise, Syl’s failed to fully fire in the first half and would have been glad for near parity at half time.
Some of the substitutions in the second-half proved important with Dave Sexton and Eoghan Hamill prominent. Daniel Brennan’s work-rate off the ball and willingness to attack the defence while in possession offered Croke some different problems to the first half and testament to this was three more second half goals.
Finnerty once again finished his chance well and both Alex Wright’s goals showed excellent composure, vision and finishing power.
With the home-team four points up with less than five minutes to go, Crokes were offered a lifeline with a penalty that they dispatched to leave one between the teams.
However, the hosts showed confidence and industry to finish strong and secure their first two points of the AFL 2 campaign.
With the likes of Fionn Carney, Conor Meaney, Jack and Glenn Hazley yet to return from injury and a focus on integrating youth players into their wider panel, the management team are hopeful to add to a solid pre-season block, laying the base for a promotion push.