O’Donovan Rossa 1-13
St James 2-10
GER McCARTHY REPORTS
FRANK Hayes’ injury-time goal means St James and O’Donovan Rossa will have to do it all over again following a dramatic Rowa/Rowex Pharma Carbery JAFC quarter-final at Rosscarbery.
A misfiring St James had failed to register a score for 24 second-half minutes and looked set to exit the championship until Hayes gathered a Finbarr McCarthy pass and found the back of the net deep into injury-time.
O’Donovan Rossa managed to prevent another late scoring attempt but had to settle for a replay despite dominating the entire second period.
The opening half of last Sunday’s quarter-final proved a disappointing affair with St James guilty of kicking seven wides and their opponents unable to take advantage. A much-improved second period saw Rossa’s eradicate a six-point deficit and move 1-13 to 1-9 ahead with less than two minutes to go.
Then, Frank Hayes landed a free and managed to find room before squeezing a shot into the roof of the net. The upshot of St James’ late strike is that a replay is needed to decide who will face defending champions Kilmacabea in the last four of this year’s Carbery JAFC.
‘It is always disappointing to be the team on the receiving end of the last few scores in a game like that,’ O’Donovan Rossa’s Shane Crowley admitted.
‘We feel it is one we let go even though we were six points down at one stage of the second half and they looked like they were going to win by a cricket score. Our lads are down but we created a lot of good scoring chances and will bounce back from the lessons that we learned here today.’
O’Donovan Rossa got the scoring underway courtesy of a Rory Byrne effort inside the second minute. St James’ responded quickly with Ian Evans splitting the posts but Skibbereen restored their lead when Eoghan O’Connell got his name on the scoresheet to make 0-2 to 0-1 after eight minutes.
St James equalised for a second time, Ian Evans notching his second of the afternoon after ten minutes.
Skibb’s Rory Byrne wasted a great goal chance when play resumed but Eoghan O’Connell quickly made amends by converting a 16th minute free. Skibbereen were beginning to dominate midfield when their opponents found another gear and finished the half strongly. James O’Sullivan landed a fine score before a quick hand-passing move ended with Kevin O’Brien netting from close range.
Eoghan O’Connell (free) and Rory Byrne responded with well taken points ahead of St James concluding the first half 1-6 to 0-5 in front after Aaron Hayes, James O’Sullivan and Damien Bennett (free) raised white flags.
The Ardfield club moved six clear once Aaron Hayes and Micheál McCarthy (B) pointed immediately after the break but O’Donovan Rossa proved a different proposition after half time and took control of proceedings.
Conor McCarthy’s point attempt rebounded back off a post where Kevin Hurley was waiting and fired low past stranded goalkeeper Diarmuid O’Donovan to ignite Skibbereen’s challenge. James O’Sullivan scored for St James immediately after but amazingly, that would be his team’s last point for nearly half an hour.
1-9 to 1-5 behind after 36 minutes, Skibbereen began to steamroll their opposing defence as three Owen Collins points and a converted Eoghan O’Connell free made it 1-9 apiece heading into the final quarter.
St James lost full-back Micheál McCarthy (D) to a black card as Skibb substitutes Elliot Connolly and Michael O’Sullivan began to stretch James’ defence.
Rossas continued to pour forward and were 1-13 to 1-9 ahead after Eoghan O’Connell, Kevin Hurley, Elliot Connolly and Owen Collins efforts seemingly put the game out of St James’ reach with two minutes remaining.
Incredibly, Frank Hayes converted a free on the stroke of full time before a swift passing move ended with the same player finding the net to earn St James a replay from the jaws of defeat.
O’Donovan Rossa: Eoghan O’Connell 0-5 (3f), Kevin Hurley 1-1, Owen Collins 0-4, Rory Byrne 0-2, Elliot Connolly 0-1.
St James: Frank Hayes 1-1 (1f), James O’Sullivan 0-3, Kevin O’Brien 1-0, Aaron Hayes, Ian Evans 0-2 each, Damien Bennett (1f), Micheál McCarthy (B) 0-1 each.
O’Donovan Rossa: Stephen Cotter; Jack O’Driscoll, John O’Sullivan, Eddie Nealon; Eoin O’Donovan, Kevin Cotter (captain), Shane O’Driscoll; Jack Cowap, Conor McCarthy; Brian Crowley, Eoin Hodnett, Rory Byrne; Eoghan O’Connell, Kevin Hurley, Owen Collins.
Subs: Richie Fitzgerald for S O’Driscoll (ht), Elliot Connolly for J Cowap (ht), Alan Tanner for K Cotter (36), Michael O’Sullivan for E Hodnett (40).
St James: Diarmuid O’Donovan; Thomas Nyhan, Micheál McCarthy (D), Eoin Deasy; Damien Bennett, Kevin O’Leary, David Hayes; Kevin O’Brien, Paul O’Sullivan; Micheál McCarthy (B), Ian Evans, Kieran O’Donovan; Frank Hayes, Aaron Hayes, James O’Sullivan (captain).
Subs: Eoin Feen for D Hayes (15, inj), Joseph O’Sullivan for E Deasy (24), Mark Evans for I Evans (38), Eoin Deasy for M McCarthy (D) (40, black card), Finbarr McCarthy for M McCarthy (B) (50).
Referee: Connie Murphy (Kilmeen).