Clonakilty: U12 Football vs St Colums
Match Type: League
Date & Time: August 8th 2020, 10:30 am
Score: 4:04 vs 0:13
The band of travelling parents and supporters were witness to a thrilling game which ebbed flowed throughout at a sun kissed Kealkil on Sat morning. The long journey West seemed to shake the Clon lads from any slumber and they started well playing really good football with a balanced mix of foot passing and support runs off the shoulder to create ample scoring chances for the forwards. A long range point from a free by Conor O’Gorman settled early nerves and when this was followed up by a well taken goal by Emmet Nolan the Clon lads were off to a flyer of a start.
The platform the forwards had at this point was built on a strong defensive showing with James Costello and Ben Coffey to the fore. Illan Smith and Michael Francis Collins were on top in the middle and Clon added additional scores from play through Finn O’Mahony and Mattie Lyons. To be fair at this point Clon were the dominant side but unfortunately they didn’t translate this to the scoreboard and when Colums got the last score of the first quarter the question was whether Clon had let them off the hook.
After the first water break Colums upped their tempo and work rate. They started to get a strong grip around midfield with their big number 8 starting to exert a significant influence on the game and their half back line surging forward at every opportunity. Little by little they started to claw back the Clon lead with some well taken frees. At this stage Eanna Deasy, Fionn O’Donovan and Fionn Gilmore covered well to track the extra runners coming from deep to prevent Colums getting through for any goal chances. At half time the Clonakilty led by 1-3 to 0-4 but the tide had turned and the subs bench was needed to bring fresh impetus in the hot conditions.
A new look Clon team took the field with Jack Byerley coming out from his goal keeping duties to the half forward line, Lennart Lindenfeld moving into the backs, James Costello bringing extra energy to the middle, while Harry Mulcahy and Senan O’Sullivan added fresh legs into the forwards. The changes stem the flow and the third quarter swung back and forth with both sides playing really fast exciting football. A number of times, it was only the last pass that prevented Clon from having more of a scoring impact and it was worrying that St. Colums managed to keep the scoreboard ticking with well taken points. Goals win matches and this appeared to be the way in Kealkill where the two second half goals from the penalty spot calmly converted by Jack Byerley turned the game back in Clon’s favour. St .Colums came back once more and scored the last 2 points to level it up at 3-3 to 12 points. It says a lot of the spirit and collective work rate of the Clon lads that they stayed in a game that appeared to be going away from them, the other side of the coin was that St Colum’s too showed great heart to fight back to level matters up.
The extraordinary implications of Covid kicked in at the final whistle, as there is a new requirement to have a final result for all games on the day which meant that extra time was needed to decide the game. In extra time it was always going to come down to the ability to dig deep, win the hard ball and make the most of your chances. Easy to say but with tired bodies on both sides it would require real determination to make a difference. Up stepped subs Lennart Lindenfeld and Peter O’Mahony to win key turnover ball in defense and with Jack Byerley, Peadar Dineen and Fionn Gilmore winning ball up front Clon created more chances. The hard working Illan Smith kicked an excellent point in the first period before the decisive score arrived after Peter O’Mahoney won another ball to turn defense into attack. Two quick kick passes carved opened the St. Colums defense and when Emmet Nolan won the ball he turned quickly before racing though to bury it to the back of the net. The St. Colums laid siege to the Clon goal but were denied by the collective effort of all the Clon players preventing the home side from getting in for a much needed goal.
A short stop at the Gala shop in Kealkill for well-deserved cold drinks, ice creams for the smiling but tired Clon boys capped off a great morning.
Jack Byerley, Eanna Deasy, James Costello, Fionn Gilmore, Ben Coffey, Fionn O’Donovan, Illan Smith©, Michael Francis Collins, Peadar Dineen, Emmet Nolan, Conor O’Gorman, Finn O’Mahoney and Mattie Lyons. Subs: Harry Mulcahy, Lennart Lindenfeld, Peter O’ Mahoney, Senan O’Sullivan