Valley Rovers 3-6
DENIS HURLEY REPORTS
A RE-JIGGING at half-time laid the foundations for a comprehensive turnaround in Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday as Valley Rovers got the better of Newcestown in the county SFC.
Trailing by 0-6 to 0-3 at half-time in Páirc Uí Rinn, Valleys moved John Cottrell to full-forward and he responded with two goals while sub Adam Settini added another to give them a lead they wouldn’t lose, much to the delight of manager Gerard Slyne.
‘We just thought we needed to mix things up a little bit, we were a bit stagnant,’ he said.
‘We brought in Johnnie Kiely and added a bit of speed to the half-back line. Putting John inside, we felt he’d win his own share of ball inside and something hopefully might come out of it. We got the scores off it.’
While Valleys beat Mallow in the preliminary round the previous week, they didn’t immediately carry that momentum in against their neighbours. Though they led 0-2 to 0-1 early on, they then conceded five points in a row.
Though Fiachra Lynch pointed for them late in the first half, a score from Tadhg Twomey had Newcestown 0-7 to 0-3 in front on the resumption before the fightback began.
‘We were lucky at half-time that Newcestown had missed a lot of scoreable chances and we kept in the game, the save that Cormac Desmond made early on was out of the top drawer. We were glad to be just the three points down at half-time,’ Slyne said.
After Jack Walsh’s point to make it 0-7 to 0-4, Cottrell won a good ball in by Fiachra Lynch before turning and firing a great shot beyond White, who could do little. All of a sudden, the game was level and the Valleys team were energised.
A good Eoghan Delaney point put the Rovers ahead for the first time since the eighth minute and then half-time sub Adam Settini scored a second goal with a strike almost identical to Cottrell’s, firing in from the left after Darragh Lordan did well to set him up.
After the Valleys goals, Daniel Twomey ended the Newcestown drought to bring them to within three again and Valleys wasted opportunities to push on as they shot wides, but with five minutes left they looked to have made things safe with a third goal.
Again Cottrell was the scorer, pouncing on when Jack Walsh’s ball in broke and then creating space as he sent two backs the wrong way before again firing past White.
David Lynch opened up a seven-point lead having been set up by Kevin Canty but Newcestown replied immediately when Tadhg Twomey and Luke Meade combined to provide a goal chance for Colm Dinneen, who produced a smart finish.
Newcestown’s Seán Ryan did make it a one-score game, but that was as close as they came.
Now Valleys Rovers’ focus turns to the opening round of the Premier IHC, with Blarney the opponents in a fortnight.
Valley Rovers: John Cottrell 2-0, Adam Settini 1-0, Fiachra Lynch 0-2 (1f, 1 45), David Lynch, Kevin Canty, Eoghan Delaney, Jack Walsh 0-1 each.
Newcestown: Cormac Dinneen 1-1 (1 45), Daniel Twomey 0-3 (2f), Tadhg Twomey 0-2, Luke Meade, Seánie Ryan, Mark Kelly 0-1 each.
Valley Rovers: Cormac Desmond; Ian Crowey, David Lynch, Noel O’Donovan; Tomás O’Brien, Tim Cummins, Aaaron Lyons; Kevin Canty, John Cottrell; Darragh Lordan, Eoghan Delaney, William Hurley; Jack Walsh, Eoin O’Reilly, Fiachra Lynch.
Subs: Johnnie Kiely for O’Donovan (half-time), Adam Settini for Hurley (35), Rory O’Sullivan for F Lynch (59, black card).
Newcestown: Christopher White; Seánie Ryan, Cian Twomey, Micheál McSweeney; Luke Meade, Fionn Keane, Gearóid O’Donovna; Seán O’Donovan, Trevor Horgan; Conor O’Neill, Carthach Keane, Mark Kelly; Cormac Dinneen, Tadhg Twomey, Daniel Twomey.
Referee: Cormac Dineen (Douglas).