Celtics Have All the Answers

Celtics 0-12 FDNY 1-4

The New York Celtics used a balanced attack with three scorers getting three points or more to defeat the Fire Department on Sunday in this junior football match at Gaelic Park.

Veteran Derek McKenna and newcomers Kevin Tracey and Gary Nugent had brilliant outings, while the defense held their opponents to one score in the first half in a very good win for the side.

The opening 12 minutes was devoid of scores but they certainly had plenty of heart and spirit. Both sides moved the ball up the field, but the finishing touches were a little askew.

FDNY had four wides from scoring position, while the Celtics had wides but they were a little more difficult.

Finally after 16 minutes McKenna had the first score of the afternoon, an excellent one after a Kevin Tracey shot was cleared out by Tommy Furlong. He followed it within minutes with his second another long distance drive.

The good work was for naught, however, when FDNY attacked with 20 minutes gone. A long ball from Mike Reilly was misjudged by the defense, and it bounced into the waiting arms of Dave Garvey. The big Clare man flicked to an advancing Terrence Flynn, whose shot made its way to the net of the hands of the Celtics keeper.

The Bronx side did have a glorious goal chance in the following moments, but a shot from Edwin McRee went across the goal and wide. They had the equalizer from the foot of Nugent, a free from down the center to go to the break on even terms.

In the first minute of the second half both sides had scores. Barry Annett had the first when he received the ball from the throw in, while Nugent cancelled it out at the other end immediately after their kick out.

Tracey had a pair of points for Celtics to open what was for this encounter a substantial lead. They were also persisting with the long ball into the big full forward line; it was having a somewhat telling effect in that it put the FDNY rearguard under pressure, but the layoffs and passes from possession were not as plentiful as they should have been from this tactic.

Flynn had a point in reply, but the Celtics had a head of steam going at this stage. Further points from McKenna and Tracey again made it a 0-8 to 1-2 lead. The winners had four points to the FDNY’s two the rest of the way, and suffice to say they were always able to reply to anything that the FDNY could muster.

Danny O’Sullivan, Chris O’Connor and Aiden Traynor were very effective at the back. O’Connor has tremendous potential. Derek McKenna was by far the best of the midfielders; he covered acres and was always an outlet for the defense. Kevin Tracey, Gary Nugent and subs Rory Logan were the most impressive of the forwards.

For FDNY, Pat Lyons, Dermot Hayes, Terrence Flynn and Dave Garvey were the most prominent.

FDNY: 1 Tom Furlong, 2 Brian Kehoe, 3 Pat Lyons, 4 Trey Piazza, 5 Denis Curtin, 6 Dermot Hayes, 7 Brendan Murphy, 8 Tom Walsh, 9 Bernie Madden, 10 Tom Flynn, 11 Mike Reilly, 12 Terrence Flynn (1-3), 13 Billy Donaghue, 14 Barry Annett (0-1), 15 Dave Garvey.

Celtics: 1 Kevin McArdle, 2 Rory Creegan, 3 Danny O’Sullivan, 4 Brian Greene, 5 Chris O’Connor, 6 Aiden Traynor, 7 Dave Finley, 8 Derek McKenna (0-3), 9 Shane O’Connor, 10 Kevin Tracey (0-3), 11 Gary Nugent (0-4), 12 Tom Brady, 13 John McArdle, 14 John O’Connell, 15 Edwin McRee. Subs: Rory Logon (0-1), Kevin O’Connell (0-1).

Man of the match: Derek McKenna (Celtics).

Referee: Sean Jones (Fermanagh).

Tipp, Galway All Square

Tipperary 0-17 Galway 1-14

Galway only held the lead in this senior hurling encounter for less than 10 minutes, but they nearly pulled off the first shock of the hurling championship.

As it was Tipperary recovered to drive over the equalizing point with the last puck of the ball and give them a share of the spoils. It would possibly have been a steal if the Tribesmen had got the win as they had to thank keeper Ger Corcoran for keeping them in the game after three brilliant saves in the first half.

As it was the draw was a fair result in the end.

Tipperary burst from the gate, and they had four of the first five points in the first 10 minutes as they put their undoubted mark on the game.

They had two chances of goals in the mix also, but brilliant saves by Corcoran in the Galway goal denied Liam Costello and Tadgh Lyons consecutively.

With Kieran Bergin dominant at number six, there were plenty of other chances, however. After a Ger Kelly point for Galway, Tipp had a brace from Paudie Lyons that pushed their advantage out to 0-6 to 0-2.

They were dominating across the field and could have had an insurmountable lead but for the heroics of Corcoran. Galway on the strength of their brilliant keeper slowly began to claw their way back.

In the final 15 minutes they had far more of the play and but for a slue of wides would have been level.

Thomas Gillen fired two points over from frees, and then replied to a Jayson O’Callaghan point when Galway landed a sideline cut into his hand with a good point from play.

The teams swapped points as the half arrived, with Finian Coone and Mike Curtin slotting over, but the resurgence by Galway had left them just two behind at the break.

The sides exchanged four points in the first five minutes of the second half which kept Tipp in front. A Kelly strike nudged Galway a little closer with seven minutes on the clock, but again Tipp through a Curtin wide on the left answered it.

Tipperary also had a series of wides in the first ten minutes that left Galway within reach. Two points from Mikey Costello and Sean Glynn, a free, tied the game up with sixteen minutes left on the clock.

Lyons and Coone traded scores before Liam Costello finally got his name on the scoreboard with two points that pushed Tipp back into the lead.

It was short lived, however. A long ball from Coone was grabbed by Roan Sheedy on the edge of the square. He was pulled to the ground, and Glynn stepped up and blasted to the net for Galway’s first lead of the game.

Tipperary were looking at defeat square in the face. They dug deep and rattled off two points from Lyons from play and Costello again, a nice score on the run.

The game was ebbing and swaying in both directions now. Galway again responded with Coone, who had really come alive in the second half, grapping his fourth of the day before Kelly popped over a score for a slim lead with less than a minute on the clock.

It set up Galway for their first win at this level in two years, but Tipp were not ready to succumb just yet. A final long ball from Kieran Bergin dropped into Liam Costello.

He secured possession but was fouled as he turned for goal. He could have been given advantage, but the whistle had sounded. The buzzer sounded and Lyons calmly slotted over the equalizer.

For Tipperary, Kieran Bergin, Stephen Lillis and Jason O’Callaghan impressed at the back. Dave Loughnane did well in the center, Niall Curtain and Paudie Lyons were outstanding, while Liam Costello seemed to take the wrong option in front of goal but kept battling. He was pulled down for the last free but had goal on his mind again.

Galway will be delighted with Ger Corcoran, who was brilliant. Mike Kearney, Brian Gardiner, Ger Kelly and Finian Coone all had valuable roles.

Tipperary: 1 Thomas O’Meara, 2 Mike Maher, 4 Stephen Lillis, 5 Jason O’Callaghan (0-1), 6 Kieran Bergin (0-1), 7 Jayson Phelan, 8 David Crimmins, 9 Davie Loughnane (0-2), 10 Niall Curtain (0-4), 11 John Madden, 12 Paudie Lyons (0-7), 13 Robert Duff, 15 Liam Costello (0-2).

Galway: 1 Ger Corcoran, 2 Mike Kearney, 4 Cathal Tracey, 5 Seamus Pender, 6 Thomas Gillane (0-3), 7 Glen Galvin, 8 Brian Gardiner, 9 Mikey Costello, 10 Ger Kelly (0-4), 11 Ronan Sheedy, 12 Sean Glynn (1-1), 13 Finian Coone (0-4), 15 Dave Simms.

Man of the match: Ger Corcoran (Galway).

Referee: Donie O’Sullivan (Cork).

Coady Is a Charm for Kerry

Kerry 0-19 Armagh 1-12

A two-pronged attack Martin Coady and Conor O’Leary led Kerry to victory over a stubborn Armagh on Sunday in this intermediate football contest.

A spurt in the second half when they scored seven points without reply was clinical, with both players’ grabbing scores during that time when the win was secured.

Coady got all his scores from play which was all the more impressive, with Armagh unable to come to terms with his ability.

Kerry opened the game in superlative form. They had three of the first four scores, with O’Leary getting two.

O’Leary was showing a clean pair of heels to his marker as he tormented the Armagh defense. He linked with Coady twice as the Galway under-21 fired points over after Shane Langan also got on the scoresheet.

The Kingdom were now ahead 0-5 to 0-1, and after both sides had scores -- Coady and Alan Hearty, a free -- Kerry still looked poised to win this game in a rout.

Armagh put paid to those thoughts starting in the 15th minute when Sean Kelly fired over an excellent point from the right wing that began the recovery.

After a Kerry wide, Armagh worked the kick out to Kevin McGeeney in the middle of the field. His long kick deceived the defense and was scooped up by Shane Lyons at speed heading for goal. He fired an unstoppable shot to the net from the 14 and the game was tied.

Hearty added a free when Lyons was fouled, and Conor Hunter had a tremendous point when he joined the attack. When Hearty fired another free over on the 25th minute Armagh were ahead 1-6 to 0-6.

Kelly had another goal chance as the final five minutes of the half arrived, but the rebound off a Hearty free was cleared to safety, although Kelly would certainly like a second chance with the ball.

Kerry awoke to the travesty for them just before the break. They used the useful Coady as the catalyst for the recovery. He had points each side of a Darren Courtney score while Armagh had another free from Hearty.

As the short whistle arrived Armagh were holding a 1-7 to 0-9 lead after looking dead in the water.

Kerry again had the better start to the half as they had four of the first six scores in the last half of the holiday weekend. Three of the four were of the boot of O’Leary from frees and play.

After a McGeeney sublime score from the right wing it was all Kerry for the following 15 minutes.

Actually it was the O’Leary and Coady show. Coady had two points from play while O’Leary also chipped in with two.

Martin Mahoney had the two also as the Kingdom pulled away to put substantial daylight between the sides.

Two Hearty frees and another McGeeney score was all that the Orchard side could muster as Kerry easily distanced them selves from their opponents. The only goal chance that came Armagh’s way in the final fifteen was a Hunter effort that was cleared easily by Tommy Quaid. 

Kerry will be very happy with the second half showing of their side. Gary Rolls, Martin Mahoney and Donal Walsh impressed throughout the game. Martin Coady was tremendous; he is certainly good enough for senior football in New York, and on this showing will have many a defense chasing him over the next two months.

Conor O’Leary is an impressive free taker and in open play. Shane Langan and Tommy Quaid off the bench also had leading roles.

Armagh will be disappointed with the second half fade. They had 15 minutes when they pulled ahead, and at that point it looked as if they could get a result.

Garth Kelly did nothing wrong in his new role. Joe Mooney, Patsy Martin, and Kevin McGeeney showed throughout. Alan Hearty was brilliant from frees and also did some useful work in open play. Shane Lyons had a good encounter. 

Kerry: 1 Ger O’Sullivan, 2 Alan Lyons, 3 Eoghan O’Mahoney, 4 Damien Clougher, 5 Shane Coffey, 6 Gary Rolls, 7 Donald Walsh, 8 Martin Mahoney (0-2), 9 Fintan Coffey, 10 Martin Coady (0-8), 11 Darren Courtney (0-1), 12 Kieran O’Shea, 13 Conor O’Leary (0-7), 14 Brian Newman, 15 Shane Langan (0-1). Subs: Tommy Quaid, Conor O’Dea.

Armagh: 1 Garth Kelly, 2 Desi Toolan, 3 Aiden Traynor, 4 Joe Mooney, 5 Conor Hunter (0-1), 6 Patsy Martin, 7 Eoghan McParland, 8 Kevin McGeeney (0-3), 9 Collie Fearan, 10 Shane McKenna, 11 Alan Hearty (0-7), 12 Sean Kelly (0-1), 13 Sean McMullan, 14 Niall Farrelly, 15 Shane Lyons (1-0).

Man of the match: Martin Coady (Kerry).

Referee: Tommy Fahey (Waterford).

Setanta Stars in Rockland

On Saturday, June 27, the Setanta Gaelic football club, based in Katonah, New York, played in the Rockland County GAA Denis McHugh Gaelic Football Tournament for children eight and under. 

Setanta was established this past April, so this was the players’ first exposure to a Gaelic football competition.  What they lacked in experience, though, they made up for in grit and determination, winning their first three matches against teams who had been playing together for years. 

Incredibly, the team made it to the semifinals of the tournament, where they lost a close, hard-fought match to the New York Rangers. 

Overall, it was a great experience for the players, with their performance exceeding everyone’s expectations, except perhaps their own. 

This fall, Setanta will play a full schedule of matches against teams in the surrounding area.  The club is open to children between the ages of five and 13, and currently consists of members from throughout Westchester as well as southwestern Connecticut. 

For information on joining Setanta, e-mail Gerald Padian at [email protected] or call 917-903-0938.