Knock-out performance

by Gazette Reporter

CASTLEKNOCK celebrated another memorable day with the capture of the Under-15 A and C football championship titles. Remarkably, all three of Castleknock’s Under-15 sides were in final championship action with the D championship the only title to elude the Somerton outfit.
In the A final played at Parnell Park, the Somerton side opened strongly against Balinteer St John’s with an early goal and point from Conor Murray.
The opening quarter belonged to Castleknock but a patient Ballinteer side got the scoreboard moving after ten minutes through Liam Fenton and thereafter the balance of play shifted in the southsiders’ favour.
Guilty of some ponderous play, albeit against a stiff breeze, the blue and golds gave up control of the game for the remainder of the first half.
A string of fine scores followed from Jack Lundy, Liam Fenton and Adam O’Brien for Ballinteer and Luke Cullen did well to ghost past the Knock defence to find himself in space and record a score.
Soloing the ball for 40 yards, Oran Farrell laid the ball off to Knock’s Tom Norton which he duly blasted towards goal only to be tipped over the bar by alert keeper David Reinhardt. Castleknock trailed 1-2 to 0-9 at the break, nonetheless.
A refreshed looking Knock had the better of the opening minutes of the second half with a point for PJ Campbell. Evan McSherry twisted and turned his marker to give himself a shooting chance and score but it was the second Castleknock goals from Fionn Gibbons which ignited the game as a contest.
On level terms mid-way through the second half, Luke Swan put Knock ahead with a goal only to have it cancelled out by a Fenton major within a minute.
An important intervention by Knock full back Senan Forker quenched a late Ballinteer attack and set up Conor Murray for a nice score.
Outbreaks of rough play in the final minutes were dealt with by referee Ian Howley with a liberal use of black and red cards but Castleknock couldn’t be stopped as Norton rounded off the Castleknock scoring to give them a 3-8 to 1-12 win.
In the C championship final, Castleknock ran out 5-6 to 3-11 winners over Round Tower, Clondalkin. The narrow margin win reflected the competitive nature of the tie played out at Blakestown Road.
A man of the match performance, and goal, from second half substitute Jack lynch kept Knock in a game where they recorded a total of 17 wides.
Corner Back Keith Murray was on song and a positional change which saw Matt Lynam move from wing back to full forward paid off handsomely with a goal from him also.

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