Tiernan Morrissey smashes the ball past Piltown keeper Jamie Murphy and (inset) turns away to celebrate.

Tiernan Morrissey smashes the ball past Piltown keeper Jamie Murphy and (inset) turns away to celebrate.

Ferrybank Boys National School 2; Piltown National School 1

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From time to time football can throw up something extraordinary and that was the case with this superb contest in Ozier Park last week. With the headquarters of local soccer due to close this week for much needed upgrading, the old venue played host to an absolutely smashing game between two delightful teams and there is no doubt that the late Jack Kennedy would have loved every minute of it if he was still with us because the contest had everything possible, everything that is good about underage soccer.

The players on view were in the under 12 age bracket and all of them did themselves, their families and of course their schools proud. In an age when football can be sterile and dull at times, this match was a throwback to a time when youngsters went out to enjoy themselves and in doing so turned on a beautiful hour of free-flowing and attacking football.

Ferrybank had lost their grip on this trophy last year and they wanted to get it back from Piltown. They did just that in the most dramatic of circumstances by scoring the winning goal with just one minute remaining and the golden goal was scored by a substitute who was only on the field for two minutes. How could you possibly write a script like that! One had to feel sorry for the Piltown boys, but although they lost they can take a lot of credit from the match because they never stopped running, tackling and passing with great heart and indeed skill.

Gerard Duggan and Aidan Rynne were the men managing the Ferrybank team while John Lonergan was the man in charge of Piltown. Those guys can be extremely proud of their charges, both on and off the field.

Morrissey scores

Piltown were the first side to attack through Kyle Walsh but his shot from the right side of the penalty area was blocked by the Ferrybank defender MJ Sutton. Tiernan Morrissey of Ferrybank ran on to a long pass from Shane Dineen on 13 minutes but he was just off target with a shot on the run. Piltown went back on the attack once again on 19 minutes with Francis O’Brien picking out Kyle Walsh but the Ferrybank goalkeeper Shane Morrissey advanced from his line to clear the danger. Dylan Kirby then crossed from the left 2 minutes later but the Piltown striker Francis O’Brien headed over the crossbar.

The action continued to come thick and fast. Aaron Gallagher tested the Ferrybank goalkeeper on 22 minutes and moments later at the other end Jonathan Brown lobbed the ball forward from his right full back position only for the Piltown goalkeeper Jamie Murphy to tip it away at the expense of a corner kick. Shane Dineen, the Ferrybank captain, sent over a corner kick from the right after 27 minutes which caused havoc inside the Piltown six yards box but they eventually cleared the danger. With referee Johnny Matthews (who added greatly to the occasion) looking at his watch to bring first half proceedings to a halt, Ferrybank took the lead when Jamie Murphy did well to parry a hard drive from Alex Kinsella and Tiernan Morrissey pounced like a tiger to crack the ball to the net from 6 yards.

Super strike

Both sides had a few half-chances before Piltown equalised 8 minutes into the second period with a goal which graced Ozier Park. Ryan Gallagher played the ball forward from deep inside his own half. It went over two Ferrybank players before being picked up by the Piltown number 10 Kyle Walsh. The little striker ran 35 yards before rounding goalkeeper Morrissey and placing the ball into the empty net. After the game Johnny Matthews remarked that he had never scored a better goal himself, and when you take into account that he scored 156 goals in a glittering career, that was high praise indeed.

Shane Dineen went close for Ferrybank with a long range effort shortly afterwards. What proved to be the winning goal arrived with just 60 seconds of normal time remaining. Shane Meagher who had just come on rose high inside the Piltown penalty area to power home a header following a left wing corner kick taken by the superb captain Shane Dineen. The Ferrybank supporters ran on to the field when the full time whistle blew shortly afterwards shouting “we won the cup”. Happy days indeed.

Man of the Match

There were plenty of players in the mix for the coveted Man of the Match award. Shane Dineen was

superb in his role of Frybank skipper. His counterpart, the Piltown captain Alan Dowley, was also an excellent performer. Isaac Power, Jonathan Brown and Tiernan Morrissey also came to the notice of many. David Norris, Francis O’Brien and Ryan Gallagher were brilliant for Piltown. At the end of the day however the nod went to Piltown’s Kyle Walsh. Apart from his wonder goal he also looked dangerous every time he got on the ball and his left wing play was a joy to behold. A worthy winner.

Ferrybank B.N.S. Panel: Shane Morrissey, Jonathan Brown, Daryl Griffin, John Ahearne, MJ Sutton, Shane Dineen, Alex Kinsella, Samuel Oresanya, Isaac Power, Tiernan Morrissey, David Atkins, Jeff Lawless, Garouk Umar, Shane Meagher, Shane Cox, Mark O’Connell, Robert Carew.

Piltown N.S. Panel: Jamie Murphy, David Norris, Alan Dowley, Craig Kennington, Aidan Ryan, Aaron Gallagher, Ryan Gallagher, Josh Quinn, Francis O’Brien, Kyle Walsh, Dylan Kirby, Michael Dunne, Thomas Murray, Eoin Reilly, Nathan Cooper, Richard Brophy, Aaron Power.

Ref: Johnny Matthews.