Clare Soccer Round Up
Munster Junior Cup
It was a disappointing weekend for Clare teams in Munster Junior Cup action as three more Banner sides bowed out of the provincial competition at the fourth round stage.
Shannon Town 2-2 Dungarvan Utd (AET) – Dungarvan won 16-15 on penalties
It will be of little comfort to Shannon Town that they were involved in something of a historic tie as they came out on the wrong side of a dramatic showdown.
Penalty shootouts are always dramatic affairs, but this one surpassed all expectations with no less than 40 spot kicks being needed to finally separate two evenly matched sides.
It was a cruel ending for Shannon Town who had shown great heart to respond from conceding a goal in extra-time to find another leveller which forced the game to the shootout.
The sides were deadlocked at 1-1 after the opening 45 minutes with Colin Scanlan on target for the Shannon side. Both teams had chances to find the winner in the second period but neither managed to break the deadlock so extra-time beckoned.
Dungarvan looked to have found the crucial score in that added period as they went 2-1 clear, but there was a foreboding of the drama to come when Gary O’Connell responded and sent the game all the way to the death.
The shootout looked as if it was going on an eternal roundabout with the full complement of penalty takers going around several times before Dungarvan eventually edged a dramatic contest.
Waterford Crystal 1-0 Newmarket Celtic A
Newmarket Celtic’s wait to break their run without silverware outside of the county goes on after they were beaten in dramatic fashion in this fourth round tie.
It was a strong Newmarket line up with former FAI Junior International Players of the Year Eoin Hayes and Stephen Kelly in the starting 11 along with stalwarts like Paddy Purcell and David McCarthy.
Newmarket looked the more likely to open the scoring but found it difficult to break down a resolute Waterford Crystal defence. They were much the better side in the opening period, but at the break the deadlock was yet to be broken.
That trend continued after the restart and it looked as if the game was destined for extra-time. That destiny changed in the last minute of the contest though as Waterford Crystal pounced for the winner to break Newmarket’s hearts.
Their attentions will now turn to defending their domestic league and cup titles, but their bids for FAI and Munster Junior cup success will have to wait for another season.
Elsewhere in the Munster Junior Cup, it there was also defeat for Lifford, who were beaten 3-1 by Cork outfit Wilton United.
There was better news for the Clare underage sides in action last weekend, with Tulla United advancing to the fifth round of the FAI U-17 Cup after beating College Corinthians 6-5 in a penalty shootout. The game had finished 1-1 AET, but it was the East Clare side who held their nerve to move on to the next round.
Bridge United moved into the fifth round of the Munster Youths Cup as they recorded an impressive 5-3 win over Caherdavin Celtic. Storm Devanney, Scott Kirkland, Thabiso Dube, Ferdia O’Lionán and Liam Buckley were all on target for the winners.
Banner Carpets and Flooring Clare Cup Round 1
Kilrush Rangers 4-1 Shannon Hibs B
Kilrush Rangers made home advantage count as they booked their spot in the second round of the Clare Cup.
Robert Clancy’s outfit were always in control of the contest, and were 3-1 in front by the half-time whistle.
Dean Neary, Liam Madigan and Norbert Kunicki found the net before the break, with Davy Foran wrapping things up in the second-half to make sure of their place in the next round.
Manus Celtic B 2-3 Ennis Dons (AET)
The drama of the cup continued in this tie with Ennis Dons coming through a tough derby clash to take their place in the next round.
They did not have it all their own way but showed the greater composure in extra time with Barry Coote proving to be the hero of the day as he popped up with the winner.
It was Manus B who held the advantage at the break as they led 1-0 thanks to Adrian McDonagh, but second half goals from Aaron Duggan and Bryan Clune put the Dons into the lead. The drama was only getting started as Manus tied the game up through Mikey McDonagh with 80 minutes on the clock and forced the added period.
There was plenty time for one more twist, and it arrived when Coote slotted home the winner to see Ennis Dons into the next round.
Banner Carpets and Flooring Clare Cup Round 2
Avenue Utd A 3-0 Ennis Town
Local derbies, and cup ties in particular, can often see the supposed underdogs turn over the bigger outfits, but a controlled performance from Avenue ensured there would be no upset in this one.
The home side in Roslevan were always comfortable and eased into the next round thanks to goals from Rory Brennan, Ronan Kerin and Alan Roche.
Manus Celtic A 1-0 Coole FC
Manus Celtic edged this all Second Division clash to move into the third round draw.
Stephen Jordan was the man who pounced for the all important goal, and it proved to be the match winner.
Sporting Ennistymon 2-0 Shannon Hibs A
Sporting Ennistymon moved further clear of the drop zone with a hard fought win over Shannon Hibs in Lahinch.
After a slow start to the campaign, Sporting have now put victories back to back for the first time this season to move them up to seventh spot in the table following with six goals in their last two games while only conceding one.
It was Ross O’Doherty who opened the scoring in this tie as he finished to the net on 25 minutes and it was enough to see his side lead 1-0 at the break.
The win was wrapped up 10 minutes from time as Sean McConigley was rewarded for his work-rate with a tidy finish to seal the points for Sporting Ennistymon.
First Division League Round Up.
Avenue United B moved back to the top of the First Division standings after a tough 1-0 win over bottom side Kildysart Celtic.
Eoghan Thynne was the man who provided the winner, with the Ennis side now sitting just above Newmarket Celtic B on scoring difference. They can go into the outright lead though as they still hold a game in hand.
Hermitage continued their push up the table with a 3-1 win away to Corofin Harps, with the goals coming thanks to a Jason Russell brace along with one for Jimmy Molloy.
Second Division League Results: Kilkishen Celtic 1-1 Bunratty Cratloe, Rineanna Rovers 2-2 Rhine Rovers.
Third Division League Result: Shannon Town C 2-4 Connolly Celtic