SFC Group C: Ratoath weather early 'Gaels' to clinch 'semi' spot
August 30, 2020
Champions Ratoath overcame a six-point deficit secure a minimum margin win over Simonstown at Pairc Tailteann on Sunday afternoon.
Ratoath ..... . 0-11
Simonstown ..... 0-10
From the second-half water-break Ratoath outscored Simonstown by 0-4 to 0-1 in a great contest to book a semi-final meeting with Summerhill, the team they beat in last year's final.
It was a pity that this engrossing contest couldn't have been witnessed by a 'live' audience.
On an ideal evening for football Ratoath defended the hospital end in the second-half with a three-point interval deficit, 0-5 to 0-8.
It was a very good contest and holders Ratoath showed admirable resilience to maintain their interest in the current campaign
Gavin McGowan led the scoring stakes for Ratoath (with five points) including the first score of the second-half.
As Ratoath eroded the deficit in the third quarter, Simonstown passed up a number of scoring chances.
Ratoath replacements had a bigger bearing on the outcome, notably Padraig Byrne whose point put Ratoath ahead for the first time. With the hour almost up Byrne was fouled for the free from which Bryan McMahon got the winning score.
Simonstown sub Conor Sheridan landed a point from a forward mark, in the 54th minute, that tied the scores, 0-10-each, for the second and final time.
Shane O'Rourke's 15-minute cameo didn't have the same impact as in the opening round win over Skryne. Ratoath's superior fitness told in the end.
In the last action of the game, Simonstown won a free about 20 metres out. It was played to a player too close to the kicker and with it went the north-Navan side's bid for a third title in five years.
Eager to put behind them their shock loss to Nobber last time out, Simonstown burst from the blocks posting six points without reply in the opening 13 minutes.
Ratoath pulled two points back before the water-break through Gavin McGowan and Daithi McGowan.
Ratoath managed to pull another point back during the second quarter, getting the gap down to two through Cian Rogers in the 26th minute.
Padraig McKeever wrapped up the first-half scoring to leave his side three points to the good after an enjoyable first-half.
Scorers: Ratoath - Daithi McGowan 0-5 (4fs); Bryan McMahon 0-2 (fs); Gavin McGowan, Cian Rogers, Conor Rooney, Padraig Byrne 0-1 each.
Simonstown - Padraig McKeever 0-4 (3fs); Nicky O'Brien 0-2; Conor Sheridan (forward mark), Sean Tobin, Rory Connor, Ben Hoey 0-1 each.
Ratoath - Shane Duffy; Jack Gillespie, Conor McGill, Ben Weir; Ciaran O Fearraigh, Gavin McGowan, Andy Gerard; Ben McGowan, Darragh Kelly, Daithi McGowan, Cian Rogers, Conor Rooney; Cian O'Brien, Bryan McMahon, Jack Flynn. Subs - Tom Fadden for Gerard (42), Emmet Boyle for O'Brien (42), Padraig Byrne for Flynn (48).
Simonstown - Robbie Burlingham; Mark Gardner, Michael Gavin, Josh Carolan; Brian McGrath, Briain Conlon, Shane Gallagher; Sean Tobin, James Kilcullen; Ben Hoye, Padraig McKeever, Nicky O'Brien; James Heaney, Rory Connor, Andrew Kearney. Subs - Rory O'Connor for Heaney (44), Joe Lyons for Connor (44), Conor Sheridan for Tobin (44), Shane O'Rourke for Kearney (50), Shane Barry for O'Brien (56).
Referee - Cormac Reilly (St Mary's)
MEATH HOGAN STAND