20 January 2024 | 2:03 PM

Rearcross U-14 Boys clinch thrilling League title

Rearcross travelled to Ardcroney on Saturday to play a league decider match and it was Rearcross who started the quickest in wet and damp conditions. Conor Nolan got on the score sheet when a Patrick Carr pass put Conor into space and he was too quick for the Ardcroney defence to catch and leave Rea ahead with just a minute gone in the tie. Rearcross got to extend their lead when Jonathan Dawson made no mistake from the penalty spot with 6 minutes on the clock. Ardcroney to their credit fought back and were awarded a penalty in the 10th minute for a hand ball. Shane O'Meara stepped up to take it and his effort just beat an outstretched Darragh Reynolds in the Rearcross goals. Ardcroney now with a strong wind at their backs, scored to make it 2 apiece when an Ardcroney corner wasn't cleared by Rearcross and Jack O'Meara dispatched to the back of the net. Rearcross were to have the final say before half time when Conor Nolan made it 3-2 to Rearcross. A move that started with Patrick Carr and Cathal Hickey found Jonathan Dawson out on the left flank, his delivery was met by Conor Nolan who was the quickest to reach the loose ball in the Ardcroney square.
Rearcross were to extend their lead 5 mins into the second half through a Conor Nolan goal, a move that saw Cathal Hickey gliding past two Ardcroney midfielders to pass to Patrick Carr who’s through ball split the Ardcroney defence and there was no catching Conor Nolan who sent an unstoppable shot passed Ronan Hayes in the Ardcroney goals. Stephen Ryan was unlucky not to take his scoring record to 7 goals from corner kicks after his effort was headed just wide. Ardcroney did carry an attacking threat to which Darragh Reynolds reacted smartly. James Costello and Matthew Ryan also helped with clearances. Rearcross made it 5-2 when a quick counter attack caught Ardcroney as Jonathon Dawson was on hand to bag his second of the day. Ardcroney pushing for a goal saw a move break down because of strong defending by Conor McInerney and Stephen Ryan with the latter breaking with the ball from the Rearcross defensive line and his smart chip over the Ardcroney defence put Conor Nolan away and Conor made it a hat trick for the day. Conor and Jonathan bothhad strikes saved by Ronan Hayes in the Ardcroney goals. Cathal Hickey also saw his effort saved by the Ardcroney keeper. Rearcross did make it 6-2 when Ciaran McLoughlin was taken down in the Ardcroney box. Up stepped Jonathan Dawson to take the penalty and he made it 6-2 to Rea and took his season tally to 17 goals. Rearcross finished out the match stronger and a big cheer from the players was heard when the referee blew the final whistle. The whole panel went for a celebratory dinner after the match to celebrate the hard work these players put in this season. The upset of losing the league last year for these players is now a forgotten memory.

Ardcroney FC: R Hayes, C Gaynor, S Courtney, T Teefey, L Killackey, H Gannon, M Cleary, A Fahey, S O’Meara, J O’Meara, R Cleary
Subs: D O’Brien, R McLoughney, C Last, B McLoughney, O Moroney, H O’Meara, C McLoughney, A Cleary

Rearcross U-14 Boys: Darragh Reynolds, Conor McInerney, James Costello, Stephen Ryan, Matthew Ryan, Jack Hickey, Ciaran McLoughlin, Patrick Carr, Conor Nolan, Jonathan Dawson, Ryan Quigley
Subs: Cathal Hickey, Paudie Clifford, Andrew Hanly, Sean Guidera, Liam O'Dwyer

Referee: Lee Doran


Report by Shane Reynolds



Date Time
20 January 2024 2:03 PM