U-21’s v Mayo Gaels – Match Report
Davitts and Mayo Gaels clashed in the County U-21 B quarter-final in Bekan on Sunday with Davitts advancing to the semi-final after a battling 3-6 to 2-5 victory.
The rain and a gale force wind did their best to spoil the game but credit to both teams for serving up a very exciting encounter that was in the balance right up to the final whistle.
Davitts, playing with the assistance of that strong wind in the first half, looked in big trouble after ten minutes as they trailed by 1-1 to 0-1. Evan Ronayne had scored the Davitts point but some poor wides allowed the Gaels to take the lead. Davitts rallied well however and Cathal Hennelly goaled to level the game. Points from Liam Noone (2) and the impressive Shane Treacy followed before Paul O Gara, who was having a blinder, goaled to leave Davitts ahead by 2-4 to 1-2 at halftime.
Mayo Gaels tried to get back into the game after the interval but found Brian Clarke and Padraig Mangan in superb form in the Davitts fullback line in front of Micheal Mangan who exuded confidence in goals. All of the Davitts players were tackling as if their lives depended on it. Mayo Gaels got an early point but this was cancelled out by an excellent Evan Ronayne score. Mayo Gaels pointed again but Davitts reply to this score was even better with substitute Conor Keane hammering the ball to the net following excellent work by Paul O Gara. Mayo Gaels pointed again and they converted a penalty with ten minutes remaining to narrow the gap to 3-5 to 2-4. Davitts, now without their injured captain Sean Waldron, had to pull out all the stops. It was backs to the wall stuff in the closing minutes as the Gaels moved to within a goal of Davitts but Thomas Waldron, a very effective second half sub, got a tremendous point after a great run to seal the win. Things got a bit messy in the last few moments with a number of handbags being swung as the game became very stop/start which suited the Davitts lads.
Every Davitts player played their part in this win which, because of the conditions, had as much to do with grit and determination as it had to do with football ability.
Davitts: Micheal Mangan, Padraig Mangan, Brian Clarke, Patrick Keadin, Cathal Higgins, Cathal Hennelly (0-1), Sean Waldron, William Freeley, Shane Treacy (0-1), Andrew Peters, Paul O Gara (1-0), Liam Noone (0-2), Evan Ronayne (0-2). Subs used: Thomas Waldron (0-1), Conor Keane (1-0).