The game that had everything
Summerhill qualified for the Premier Division 6 championship final with a great win in the semi-final against neighbours Trim on Friday evening in Trim. It was a fantastic game that had everything, 8 goals, black cards, missed penalty extra time, it had the lot. Both teams had played the previous week at the same venue in the final group game where Trim came out on top winning by 4 points.
Conditions were dry but there was a strong wind blowing directly down the pitch towards the town end which was going to have a significant influence on the game. Trim played with the wind in the first half and knew they would need to take a lead into the second-half. Summerhill started well with a point from Connor Summerville to open the scoring. In the 4th minute of the match Summerhill were awarded a penalty for a foot block on Connie McGrath as he shot for goal. The penalty was duly dispatched by Cathal Ryan to give Summerhill the perfect start. Unfortunately, in a blow to Summerhill, Ryan had to leave the pitch minutes later with a reoccurrence of a hamstring injury.
A number of points were exchanged between the teams over the next 15 or so minutes and by the 18 minutes the scoreline stood us Summerhill 1-4 Trim 0-5 with Summerhill points coming from Conor Summerville, Ray Comey and an excellent, if rare, point from Paddy Troy who reckons it’s about five or six years since he last scored for Summerhill!
The home side gradually started to take advantage of the elements and in the 20th minutes scored their first goal of the game to take the lead for the first time. Trim added a second goal in the 24th minute to stretch their lead further. A further Trim point in the run up to half time so them lead at the break on a scoreline of Summerhill 1-5 Trim 2-6.
With the wind at their backs Summerhill dominated the early stages of the second-half but only had one point, a Conor Summerville free, to show first after 15 minutes due to some poor shooting. The game was getting a little techy at this stage with some hard tackles going in and this resulted in Trim picking up two black cards in the 11th and the 13th minute which saw them reduced to 13 players for a time. With the numerical advantage Summerhill slowly but surely started to find their range and hit four points in a row two from Paddy Mulligan one from Luke Byrne and one from James Gray to finally take the lead in the 22nd minute. Now back to the full complement Trim hit back immediately with two points of their own to retake the lead again with time running out. However, a late Brian Rispin point brought the sides level once more and saw the game head for extra time on the scoreline of Summerhill 1-12 Trim 2-9.
Trim, now with the wind at their backs made a great start to the extra time scoring 1 goal and two points without reply to open up a 5 point lead. A James Gray point in the 9th minutes of extra time reduce the lead and then came what would prove to be a crucial score against the wind. Connie McGrath got his fingertips to a long ball played in by Mark Donoghue to divert it to the back of the Trim net for a vital goal on the stroke of half time in extra time. This cut the Trim lead to just a single point 2-13 to 3-11.
Buoyed up by the late goal at the end of the first half, Summerhill, now with the wind at their backs, dominated the opening stages of the second-half of extra time. In the 2nd minute Tommy Lynch claimed a Trim kick out around the middle of the field an expertly fired the ball back over the retreating Trim goalkeeper’s head into the back of the net for a great goal. From the resulting kick out Connor Summerville ran through and fired the ball to the back of the net again for another goal. Moments later Summerville added free for the now rampant Summerhill team to push the lead out to six points with about 5 minutes left. Trim to the credit did not give up and threw everything into attack. With three minutes left on the clock they were awarded the penalty which would have put them back in the game, but the Trim player fired his shot narrowly wide much to the relief of the Summerhill men. Trim kept attacking and in the last attack of the game did score a goal to reduce the deficit to two points, but time ran out on them leaving the full-time score Summerhill 4-14 Trim 4-12.
It was a great game that constantly swung one way and then the other throughout. Summerhill finished the game with 5 of last years minors on the field, Darragh Loughry, James, Gray, David Moore, Jamie Burke and Pauric Ennis. It was perhaps these young legs that proved to be the difference in the end against a gallant Trim team. Next up in a final against Ratoath or Gaeil Colmcilles in a week or two.
Team: Sean Hughes, Stephen Husband, Darragh Loughrey, John Comey, Paddy Troy (0-1), Gary Rispin, Donald Matthews, Darragh McVann, Paddy Mulligan (0-2), Conor Summerville (1-6, 3f), Luke Byrne (0-1, 1f), Brian Rispin (0-1), Cathal Ryan (1-0, 1pen), Connie McGrath (1-0), Ray Comey (0-1).
Subs: James Gray (0-2) for Cathal Ryan, David Moore for Ray Comey, Tommy Lynch (1-0) for Paddy Mulligan Mark Donoghue for Stephen Husband, Jamie Burke for Gary Rispin, Pauric Ennis for John Comey.