The Bolton team, fans and officials celebrate on the Ozier pitch after the presentation.

The Bolton team, fans and officials celebrate on the Ozier pitch after the presentation.

Bolton – 1
Kilmacthomas – 1 (AET)

Bolton and Kilmacthomas had both played 16 games during a nine month campaign prior to this amazing match which was played in Ozier Park on Saturday last.

Both had won 13, drawn two and lost just once during that period so perhaps it was written in the stars that it would take a penalty shoot-out to separate them considering their identical records. This was the third game in seven days for the teams and it came as no surprise that it was the case of “the walking wounded” during the extra time period and of Matt Keane reports course during the dramatic shoot-out.

Players from both outfits were out on their feet and many of them limped out of Ozier Park totally shattered following their exploits.

Kilmacthomas looked the more impressive outfit during the early stages and Joey Veale made Liam Purcell work as early as the second minute with a long range effort. The Bolton custodian then had to turn away a shot from John Cleary on six minutes. Bolton’s first real attempt came from Darren Flynn when he saw his effort deflected away for what proved to be a fruitless 37th minute corner kick.

Kilmacthomas broke the deadlock three minutes before the interval. Eoin Walsh played a short corner kick to Kealon Kiersey and when he played the ball high into the Bolton penalty area from the left Andy Hubbard rose above two defenders to head to the back of the net.

Bolton came out for the second half in a far more positive frame of mind and Alan Martin had a shot charged down by Patrick Mulhearne on 48 minutes. ‘Freddie’ Raymond Carroll then set up Darren Flynn on 52 minutes but the latter shot wide with only the Kilmacthomas goalkeeper Josh Moore to beat. The city side did however equalise two minutes after the hour mark. Right-full back Derek O’Keeffe played the ball into the path of Joey Dwyer and he cracked the ball past Josh Moore from just inside the right side of the 18 yards box.

The Kilmacthomas team defeated by Bolton in the Division 2B play-off.

The Kilmacthomas team defeated by Bolton in the Division 2B play-off.

The pace of the game dropped following that goal and the only other half decent chance fell to Joey Veale five minutes from the end of normal time when he cracked in a free kick from 20 yards but Liam Purcell kept Bolton in the game with a fine save.

The extra 20 minutes produced very little in the way of goalscoring chances.

The penalty shoot-out was dramatic to say the very least. Kilmacthomas went first but John Cleary had his effort saved by Liam Purcell. Assistant referee Tony Walsh adjudged that Purcell had moved before the kick so Cleary got a second chance to score.

However he shot wide with his second attempt. Raymond Carroll (Bolton), Tony Kirwan (Kilmacthomas), William O’Keeffe (Bolton), Joey Veale (Kilmacthomas), Michael Grey (Bolton) and Gavin Dee (Kilmacthomas) were then all successful. Philip Nugent struck the crossbar with Bolton’s fourth spot kick to leave the score level at 3-3.

Martin Sutton (Kilmacthomas) and Davin Moran (Bolton) then missed their efforts. Moran had his fi rst penalty saved by Josh Moore but again Anthony Walsh adjudged that the goalkeeper had moved. However Moran second penalty was saved again by Moore. When Patrick Mulhearne of Kilmacthoms blazed the ball over the crossbar in the sudden death period it was left to Derek O’Keeffe to win the league for Bolton and the defender who had played through the pain barrier for well over an hour made no mistake from 12 yards.

BOLTON: Liam Purcell, Derek O’Keeffe, Kieran Rice (Michael Grey `29) Darren Walshe, Jamie McDonald, Paul Delehunty, Darren Flynn (William O’Keeffe `85) Alan Martin (Davin Moran `105) Joey Dwyer, Raymond Carroll, Philip Nugent.

KILMACTHOMAS: Josh Moore, Martin Sutton, Martin Coffey (Tony Kirwan `102) Patrick Mulhearne, Jay Hurton, Andy Hubbard, John Cleary, David Power, Eoin Walsh( Gavin Dee `97) Joey Veale, Kealon Kiersey ( David Sutton `87)

REFEREE: Gavin Keyes.

ASSISTANTS: Anthony Walsh, John O’Brien.