The under 16?s began life in section one with an unconvincing win against Slaughtneil. With Connor (hamstring), Greg (dislocated finger), Ferghal (Tonsilitis), Gerard and Mark all unavailable the management had to make a number of changes. The injury list has now worsened after the game with John (Hamstring) and Cathal (ankle) joining the list.
Desertmartin 5-14 Slaughtneil 3-9
The team began very nervously conceded a couple of early points. In there first attack however Enda brilliantly flicked on for John to fire home the opening goal. Slaughtneil immediately and when a forward was fouled in the area they were awarded a penalty Christopher was the saviour however when dived to the left to turn the ball away. Buoyed by this let off the team began to get into the game points from Sean and Enda left a goal between the teams. A number of defensive errors allowed Slaughtneil to level matters with their first goal. However the team were beginning to compete at midfield and points followed from Enda and Sean and the teams second goal from Enda. Slaughtneil replied with their second goal. The team however played their best football during the closing tem minutes of the half with points from enda 3 and Paul 1 and a second goal from John with Slaughtneils only reply being a point.
Half time Desertmartin 3-8 Slaughtneil 2-3
With Paddy O?Neill having an Under 14 Championship match tonight he was replaced at half time by Paddy Trainor with Cathal moving to centre half back. The team once again began sluggishly with Slaughtneil registering the first 3 scores of the half with 3 points, once again it was John who helped settle the nerves when he completed back to back hat tricks with his third goal. Slaughtneil were far from finished and their reply finished with a second penalty award. Once again Christopher came to the rescue when he dived to the right to save. Slaughteill did hit 2 points to reduce the deficit. Two points from Enda however restored the advantage and when John hit his fourth goal of the night the points seemed to be in the bag. Slaughtneil replied immediately when a misunderstanding at the back allowed them in for a goal. The closing stages were however played out in the Slaughtneil half with Enda O?Hagan finally springing to life with 3 points John also added a point before retiring injured. Slaughtneil did have the final say with a consolation point.
Whilst it wasn?t a vintage performance the management appreciate the effort put in by all the players, this is always going to be a learning experience for management and players and hopefully lessons learned from tonight can be brought into the next game. Most of the lads have a tough schedule with Minor games, Under 14 games and development squad sessions.
On the night their were fine performances from Matt and Paul McFlynn in defence Cahir worked tirelessly at midfield up front Cathal had a great first half before move to Centre back whilst Paul and Joey also performed well.
However 3 players stood out Christopher in Goals had his best game of the season with two penalty saves. Whilst up front Enda and John were superb, with their movement and pace causing Slaughtneil problems all night.
1. C Bradley
2. D Hegarty
3. P Kidd
4. M Connery
5. P McFlynn
6. P O?Neill
7. R Murray
8. E O?Hagan (0-3)
9. C Madden
10. P McGovern (0-1)
11. S Fullen (0-2)
12. C Brown
13. E McGuckan (1-7)
14. J Hughes (4-1)
15. J Leyden
The team’s next game is on Sunday Morning at 11.00 away to Lavey. Note change of time due to Derry Game