Combined Counties Football League Roundup Week 21
This weekend marked the return of a full programme of games in the C.C.F.L including in the underage Divisions.
In the Under 17 Division Willow Park maintained their one hundred per cent advantage with another facile victory. Daingean Town were the victims on this occasion. There were also wins for Rosenallis, Saint Aengus and Mullingar Athletic in this Division
In the Under 18 Division Edenderry Town kept the pressure on at the top of the table when they accounted for Mullingar Athletic 3-0 at home. However Newbridge Town remain top of the table following a resounding 5-1 win over bottom side Derry Rovers in Newbridge. Corey McNamara, Joe Darcy, Dylan McDermott and a well taken brace from Darragh McHugh saw the Kildare men over the line. Abbeyleix Athletic consolidated third place with a very good 7-3 win over neighbours Portlaoise. A Ton Flanagan hat-trick was the highlight of the day, but Daragh Cribbs, Lee bergin, Philip Walton and Sean Cooney all chipped in with goals for the Abbeyleix men who are still well positioned if the top two make any slips.
In Cup action, the Division 3 and Division 4 Divisional Cups got underway at the weekend.
The pick of the Division 3 Cup action was the Laois derby where Raheen FC came from behind to defeat Emo by five goals to two thanks mainly to a supreme display from Gearoid Parkinson. Parkinson set up numerous chances for the Dalton twins and they took full advantage of this with Mickey hitting a sublime hat-trick and Dan adding the other two for good measure. The experience of Greg O’Sullivan and the tireless play of Mike Holland were other major factors in this good win for Raheen.
In the Division 4 Cup, St James good cup form this season continued when they put out Portlaoise side Tower Hill Rovers. It finished 3-0 to the Five Alley based outfit as Wayne O’Brien and Dermot Gath scored two of the goals, the third going in off a Rovers defender.
In the Senior Division, it now seems certain that it will be another shootout between Mullingar Athletic and Willow Park for the title. Both had massive wins over the weekend to move clear at the top of the table.
C.K United lost again in the Premier Division however when goals from Darren Whelan and Darren Coffey saw Abbeyleix bring home all three points. Mark Dunne replied for C.K who amazingly are still very much in the driving seat in this Division, but they cannot afford too many more slip ups like this.
At the other end of the table, Stradbally Town gave their survival chances a massive shot in the arm when they defeated Mullingar Athletic seconds 3-0 away from home. They led 1-0 at the break thanks to a Jodie Dillon strike and further second half efforts from Derek Beale and another from Dillon gave the Laois men their best result of the season to date.
In Division 1 any one of six teams could now win it after Sunday’s results. Leaders Temple Villa lost 1-0 away to second placed Clonaslee, with Mark McEvoy the hero for Clonaslee. Meanwhile two of the other contenders Shinrone and Clonbonny played out a two all draw, which while not ideal for either side it keeps both in with a shout. Tullamore are also still in it after they defeated Clonmore 5-1 in Boora. The sixth side in the hunt, Gracefield were not in action at the weekend.
Division 1 Saturday also looks as though it will go to the wire with at least three teams fighting it out for ultimate honours. Two of these met on Saturday when Camlin entertained Mostrim and it was the Longford Town side that prevailed by two goals to one.
This gave Boro the chance to stake their claim at the top and they took it with both hands thanks to a 5-1 win over Mullingar Town seconds. Clem McCormack gave Boro the advantage in this game before Derek Murray added a second. Murray added a third soon after the restart and Declan Hanley headed in a fourth soon after this. Although Mullingar replied with a good goal Boro had the last say when McCormack fired in his second of the game to wrap up a fine team performance.
Its definitely advantage Killeigh in the Division 2 title race. On Sunday they put one of their closest rivals Walsh Island to the sword, winning by two goals to nil. It was scoreless at the break, but Padraig Horan put the Killeigh men in front on the hour mark. They then missed two penalties before Killian O’Brien settled their nerves with a late insurance goal.
There was no Division 3 action on Sunday mainly due to the Cup action, but there was one very important game in Division 4A where top of the table Abbeyleix entertained second placed Rosenallis. In the end it was the Rosenallis men who prevailed winning 5-1 in the end to make them the new favourites to win this Division. The Rosenallis defence was well organised and very solid with Podge Gorman in commanding form. They took the lead when Robbie Malone volleyed home from a corner kick. Alan Herbert and Joe Dooley then added further goals as Rosenallis took control. Alan Conroy converted a penalty and Eugene Conroy headed in a fifth for the rampant visitors before Cathal Fitzpatrick reduced the deficit for Abbeyleix. Benny Corcoran had an outstanding game in goal for Rosernallis while Damien Gorman and P.J Fitzpatrick were others to impress.
In Division 4B
Killoe consolidated second place and put some pressure on leaders Raharney with a very good 4-1 win away to Clonmore United. Higgins with two and Lynch with a third gave them a 3-0 half time lead and Finnerty rounded it off for the Longford men with a fourth in the second half. Clonmore replied with a consolation goal from a penalty kick.