MFL Division 2
Round Tower, Clondalkin 3-10
St Pat’s, Donabate 1-10
FROM three to two, to one, Round Tower’s minor footballers will play in the top tier next season after claiming Division 2 honours in front of a huge crowd of supporters in the Community Centre.
It marked the second season of promotion for the Clondalkin club and claiming top spot is testament to the excellent talent emerging from the juvenile ranks.
Joey Leech opened the scoring following a fine team move that started with keeper Oisin Douglas finding Conor Broderick. Adam Byrne then fed Joe Murray whose injection of pace created the opening for Leech to cut inside and fire his second over.
A Jack Halpin win in midfield led to fellow midfielder Alex O’Neill kicking the games second score off his left.
St Pat’s registered their first on the eight minute mark but Halpin then released Leech and his strike for goal careered back off the crossbar.
Ciaran Courtney collected the rebound to point. The deficit was reduced to one but a pivotal moment arrived on the 15 minute mark. Aaron Curtis delivered a crossfield pass to Murray and his dinked pass in behind the full backline was perfectly weighted.
Leech gathered and struck powerfully to the roof of the net. The lead up to the goal saw keeper Oisin Douglas handle with aplomb a high ball into the Towers box in wet conditions, a hallmark of his handling throughout the game.
The fourth Towers point arrived when Leech controlled brilliantly with his foot and then turned sharply to finish.
Pat’s narrowed the deficit to four but Murray’s dinked point again extended the lead. Adam Byrne timed a great interception and it led to O’Neill quickly taking a free to Courtney and he raised the arm of the umpire, 1-6 to 0-5 at half-time.
With the finish line in sight in the title chase, Towers showed signs of nerves in not converting early opportunities in the second half.
It took 10 minutes before they got their first score with O’Neill swapping passes with Courtney to a point.
Full back Shane Morrow showed safe hands when a dangers ball was fizzed across the Towers full back line.
As per first half, Towers struck a decisive blow on the 15 minute mark. Douglas kicked superbly to release Halpin. He carried and Conor Morrow flicked to Curtis who finished low under the keeper.
O’Neill carried into the 40, slowed, turned and pointed to leave the lead at 2-8 v 0-8.
Jack Quinlan dispossessed twice in the space of two minutes and Matthew Kelly continued to anchor the 40, making timely interceptions. He received from Douglas and the move led to Lu Silawong and Conor Morrow combining in the forwards to create the opening for Curtis to point.
With six minutes remaining the game was put to bed. Leech latched onto an astray kick-out and he quickly fed Courtney to strike into the top corner.
Pat’s struck a late penalty and followed it with two points without response, but the game was well beyond them.