NY College Side 3-9; NY Junior Side 1-11 

The second leg between the two New York sides with international competition on their minds took place at Gaelic Park Saturday evening.  

The weather was more agreeable on this occasion, with both sides lighting up the scoreboard to a far greater extent. Late goals were the major reason for the college victory, with both Oisin Mathers and Sean Smith hitting the onion bag. 

After falling behind 1-11 to 1-8, it was the 2-1 salvo that secured the win and the two-game aggerate triumph on 3-16 to 2-17. Bigger challenges are ahead, however, as Ireland awaits the college side which arrived in Ireland on Wednesday.

Best of luck to the New York Collegiate team as they travel to Ireland today. The team are taking part in the Corn Mac...

Posted by New York GAA on Wednesday, February 16, 2022

The college side went ahead at four minutes when Shay McElligott tapped over from play. Shortly after, Mike Brosnan received a black card for a late foul, but the college side failed to use their advantage to its fullest extent. Indeed, they added just two points to their total while the juniors replied with a beautiful point from Kevin Loane, then added a second from Shane Hogan. 

The college side had four wides in the first period which didn't help their cause as they pursued their first victory against their older rivals. Brian Coughlin extended the lead but then a brilliant junior move started and finished by Conor Mathers pushed his team ahead. He won possession and started the move before laying of the ball and continued running as four other players were involved in sweet passing movement. When Conor Mathers received the final ball, he drove it low to the keeper’s left for a superb goal. 

We were back to 15 on 15 now, but incredibly for the first time in the game, and it would happen again later, the college side defied odds to run out the half stronger. 

Mathers added a point to his side’s total, but a 1-2 burst before the halftime whistle pushed the college side ahead. 

Two points from McElligott sandwiched a Coughlin goal when the defense made a bad mistake and he punished it. The juniors did finish the half with a point from play, but they were 1-6 to 1-4 behind as the short whistle arrived. 

They were on level terms almost immediately on the restart with the excellent Conor Mathers grabbing the first while Hogan drove over the second. Dylan Curran replied eight minutes later with a point from play, but the quarter was marked by missed chances at both ends. 

Junior Connor Tunney also made amends for earlier miscues with a good stop from Grace. They finished the quarter with sustained pressure for the three full minutes, but alas for them nothing was moving on the proverbial scoreboard.  

When the ball was thrown in for the final quarter, the juniors stormed into the lead. Four points in a row, another from Conor Mathers, a brace from Hogan, followed by a mark and slotted point from Brosnan, had their side 1-10 to 1-7 ahead all inside four minutes of play. 

Brian McElligott stopped the wave with a point from play, but another junior score made it a one goal difference again with seven minutes left in the contest. They had another chance drop short into the waiting arms of Ryan Corrigan, and his outlet pass started a quick move to the other end of the field. 

A period of intense recycling by the college side came to fruition when Oisin Mathers found the back of the net and the sides were level. In quick succession, a nicely worked move ended with a Sean Smith three-pointer before Caolan Mathers joined the attack to add on an insurance score. 

The biggest scoring output by the winners of any quarter over the two-game series had pushed them into four-point advantage, 3-9 to 1-11, and the junior side’s heads had dropped for the first time in the series. Time had run out and the side that heads to Ireland this week was victorious on two fronts, the fixture and two leg series. 

For the winners, Ryan Corrigan again proved his worth with a solid outing. Peter Cronin was excellent at the back, and he was able assisted by Paudie and Caolan Mathers. Shane Brosnan enjoyed his evening in the middle of the park, while Brian Coughlin, Oisin Mathers, and Brian McElligott added scoring and enthusiasm to help the excellent Shay McElligott. At times they went across the field too much, when a more direct approach would have worked better, but they did improve the scoring percentage from last week. 

Jamie Boyle and Thomas Shalvey excelled at the back for the juniors.  Tiernan Mathers and Danny Corridan both had positive moments, while Conor Mathers was outstanding not just on the scoring front but also in his work rate across the field.  Shane Hogan added a new dimension to the side, and he kicked three lovely scores. 

The numbers on both sets of jerseys left us scratching the head for a scorers’ identity at times. If a score was awarded incorrectly, please forgive us. 

College: 1. Ryan Corrigan, 2. Peter Cronin, 3. Dylan Curran (0-1), 4. Paidi Mathers, 5. Shane Doherty, 6. Mike Boyle, 7.  Colm Shalvey, 8.  Caolain Mathers (0-1), 9. Shane Brosnan, 10.  Gearoid Kennedy, 11. Jack Healy, 12. Emmitt Loughran (0-1), 13. Shay McElligott (0-4), 14. Brian Coughlin (1-1), 15. Senan Price. Subs: Sean Smith (1-0), Pat Burke, Oisin Mathers (1-0), Aiden Connolly, Brian McElligott (0-1), Fintan Corbett, Danny Burke.   

Junior: 1. Connor Tunney, 2. Shane Quelnan, 3. Conor Hogan, 4. Dylan Rooney, 5. Jamie Boyle, 6. Kevin Rafferty, 7. Thomas Shalvey, 8. Conor Bowdon, 9. Tiernan Mathers (0-1), 10. Danny Corridan (0-1), 11. Mickey Brosnan (0-2), 12. Conor Mathers (1-4), 13. Steven Curley, 14. Shane Hogan (0-3), 15. Kevin Loane. Sub: Rory Redican.

Referee: Paddy Donoghue (New York) 

*This report first appeared in the February 16 edition of the weekly Irish Voice newspaper, sister publication to IrishCentral.

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