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Tulla United's Darragh Corry and Jack McSweeney.

Clare soccer wrap: Tulla bounce back with Celtic thrashing

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Ivan Smyth rounds up action from three games in the Maloney Hardware Premier Division starting with Tulla United’s 8-2 beating of Mountshannon Celtic

A Dan Withycombe hat trick ensured Tulla United secured a vital victory as their hopes of avoiding a relegation battle received a boost.

This result is worrying from a Mountshannon Celtic perspective as they now sit at the foot of the table with no points from their opening seven games. A positive result before the Christmas break is simply a necessity if they are to battle back from a difficult start to their campaign.

After defeating Shannon Town in the opening game of the season, Tulla subsequently lost their next five league games despite some encouraging Cup results. However, they had yet to replicate that form in the league until last weekend.

The winners did the damage in the opening half as they opened up a 5-1 lead. Dan Withycombe opened the scoring before Liam McInerney quickly added a second to give Tulla United an ideal start.

An own goal saw Tulla move three clear before Withycombe struck again. He completed his hat trick before the break to ensure Tulla United had this game won long before the full time whistle.

Michael Barrett did grab an opening half goal for Mountshannon Celtic but they were outclassed as Tulla United were relentless in their pursuit of goals.

With the knowledge that goal difference could prove critical at the end of the season, Tulla United continued to push forward in their search for goals. Although the tempo dropped slightly in the final period with such a big lead, Tulla United still managed to add three more goals to their tally.

Darragh Corry grabbed their first goal of the final period as Harty Cup winner Sean Withycombe grabbed his side’s seventh. Eoin Hassett rounded out the scoring for a rampant Tulla United as Paddy Fitzgerald’s second half strike wasn’t enough to help Mountshannon Celtic avoid staying rooted to the foot of the table.

Tulla United: Eanna Culloo, Fionn Ryan, Adam MacNamara, Daragh Corry, Dara Ryan, Jack McSweeney, Emmet Lynch, Liam McInerney, Craig McNamara, Dan Withycombe, Sean Withycombe.
Subs: Ray Bane for MacNamara, David O’Donnell for McInerney, Eoin Hassett for D. Withycombe, Fiachra Hale for Fionn Ryan, Ian MacNamara for Hale (inj.)
Mountshannon Celtic: Jason Horan, Niall Minogue, Oran Scanlan, Brian Rodgers, Sean Browne, Niall Dear, Ronan Dooley, Martin Cunningham, Cathal Doyle, Michael Barrett, Paddy Fitzgerald. Subs: Steve McSweeney for Cunningham, Dylan Bebbington for Dear.

Avenue continue winning run with 7-1 destruction of Shannon Town

Avenue United continued their rich vein of form in front of goals as they fired seven past Shannon Town.

The win ensures they lie just three points behind league leaders Newmarket Celtic as they secured their fifth straight league win. This game was held in Roslevan after initially being pencilled in for Lynch Park with weather conditions dictating the change of venue.

David Russell’s side certainly made home advantage count as they were dominant throughout. They were able to use their full compliment of five substitutions as they could turn their focus to their FAI Junior Cup fourth round showdown with Tuam Celtic.

The reigning champions enjoyed the perfect start when Eoghan Thynne drove forward from midfield to put them 1-0 up in the opening stages.

The Ennis side were controlling possession as they stroked the ball around with Shannon Town trying to disrupt their opponent’s momentum. However, they were unable to gain a foothold as Avenue continuously probed until they found their second.

This time it was Elias Kunz who bagged his first goal of the game to move Avenue 2-0 ahead. Kunz was on the scoresheet again before the break as David Russell’s side enjoyed a three goal interval lead despite the tricky weather conditions.

Although Jack Ryan managed to pull a goal back for Shannon Town in the second half, Avenue were never in danger as they moved to 15 points, just three behind Newmarket and one off Lifford AFC who have played a game more.

Ronan Kerin nabbed Avenue’s fourth goal while Vincent Onouha came off the bench to plunder home a fifth of the game for the now rampant home side.

The defending champions were far from finished as Eoghan Thynne added a sixth before Nneji Nnabuike rounded out the scoring.

Avenue United will be pleased with their current form as hard work behind the scenes meant they were able to host both their A and B side’s games on Sunday with their home pitch holding up well despite the poor weather.

The Ennis side’s form will be tested when they travel to Tuam but after last season’s Cup run but hopes are high that both they and Newmarket will be involved in the Cup after Christmas.

Avenue United: Tom O’Brien, Cullen McCabe, Kaylan O’Loughlin, Dylan Casey, Conor Hehir, Eoghan Thynne, Mark Roche, Nneji Nnabuike, Ronan Kerin, Tomas Hehir, Eliaz Kunz
Subs: Jamie Roche for O’Loughlin, Gary for Hehir, Vincent for Kunz, Callum for Roche, Dylan Barry for Thynne.
Shannon Town: Shane Russell, Cody Waller, Fionn McInerney, Natty Nyakujara, Charlie Morrison, Colin Curren, TJ O’Dwyer, Liam Boland, Ben O’Neill, Rory Hayes, Kieran Hackett
Subs: Gavin Carrig, Eoghan Gough, Jack Ryan, Aaron Kelly, Craig Riordan

Leahy strike the difference as Newmarket grind out 1-0 win over Bridge 

Newmarket Celtic secured a precious three points as they withstood a determined Bridge United effort.

Paddy Purcell’s side did enough to seal all three points as Darragh Leahy’s second half goal proved enough despite Bridge proving stubborn opposition.

On the balance of play, Newmarket created the greater volume of chances but the Sixmilebridge side were dangerous from set pieces while they will feel they should have opened the scoring in the opening 45 minutes.

With both sides unbeaten in the league this season and level on points, there was an understandable degree of tension as neither side wanted to cough up easy chances. What resulted was a spirited, combative game where neither side gave an inch.

The first real chance of the game feel to Newmarket after 15 minutes. It was Dean Hegarty who produced an excellent pass to find Darragh Leahy but Luke Woodrow produced a fine stop to divert the ball behind for a corner which Bridge cleared to safety.

Davy McCarthy tried his luck from range but Woodrow was equal to the task. Bridge were certainly not content to just sit back. They stifled Newmarket Celtic in midfield while the hard work of Paul Corry almost saw them through as after some sloppy play at the back for Newmarket, he powered through but was unable to beat Shane Cusack.

That meant the sides were deadlocked at the break. Eoin Hayes fired straight at Woodrow two minutes in to the second half while Cusack was called upon to deal with a threatening Bridge free kick.

After Bridge saw a free kick hit the wall, Newmarket managed to counter for the game’s only goal. Hegarty produced a sublime through ball which Leahy ran on to before the striker swept the ball past Woodrow to give Newmarket the lead.

Substitute Ronan McCormack was denied by Woodrow as although Bridge looked dangerous from corners and free kicks they could not conjure up the one big chance they needed as Newmarket Celtic secured all three points.

Paddy Purcell’s men now face their biggest game of the season this weekend as they travel down to Wexford to play Shelburne FC in the fourth round of the FAI Junior Cup.

Newmarket Celtic: Shane Cusack, David O’Grady, Harvey Cullinane, James Fahy, Aaron Rudd, Dean Hegarty, Eoin Hayes, Davy McCarthy, Jack Kelly, Conor McDaid, Darragh Leahy
Subs: Cathal Hayes, Lee Creagan, Ronan McCormack, Jashir Aliu, Martin McCarthy, Alan Kelly, Kevin Hartnett, Eoin Kelly.
Bridge United: Luke Woodrow, Jason Whyte, Alan Mulready, Storm Devanney, Liam Buckley, Eoin Keenan, Adam Fitzpatrick, Conor Deasy, Paul Corry, Leon Daly, Brian Corry
Subs: Leon Kelly for Whyte, Michael Carr for Buckley, Jordan Downes for B. Corry, Kieran Quinlan for Daly, Ronan Tuohy for P.Corry

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