Maynooth SLS qualified for the semi-final of the PPS Senior 'A' Football Championship final following a four point win over Good Counsel of Wexford at Carlow Hurling Club this afternoon.
On a lovely day for football, Maynooth are the second Kildare school to advance to the last four, Scoil Mhuire, Clane, booked their semi spot yesterday, defeating St Mel's and with Naas CBS to play in their quafter-final this Saturday it could yet end up with three Kildare schools in the semi-finals, an incredible achievement if it came to pass.
Good Counsel took an early two point lead before Maynooth slowly but surely got into it, drawing level with points from Ciaran Flanagan and Paddy Mahoney.
Taking control around the middle, the Kildare lads added two point from impressive Sean OSullivan from a 45 and another from open play to go two clear and that is the way stayed to the first water break.
PJ Heslin added a fifth before Maynooth keeper, Tom Kelly made a brilliant save from Counsel dangerman Gary Porter.
On 26 minutes Maynooth got the vital break through when Jack Murnane took full advantage of a defensive mistake to first-time the ball to the net and before the break, goal no. 2 arreived, this time, Sean Hever set up Ciaran Flanagan who made no mistake to leave the half-time score reading Maynooth 2-5 Good Counsel 0-3.
The impressive Paddy Mahoney added a point for the Kildare boys on the resumption but the Wexford side, managed by former Newbridge Patrician School teacher, Kevin Kehoe, hit back with two pointed frees from Kyle Rankin, which left the score at the second water break reading Maynooth 2-6 Good Counsel 0-6.
The Wexford school got right back into in on the resumption when a long ball into the danger area saw Gary Porter get a touch to steer to the net and reduce the deficit to three points.
Maynooth hit back with two excellent frees from Sean Hever to ease the growing pressure but try as they did Good Counsel could only raise one more white flag from centre back Eoin O'Brien as the final whistle, finally arrived after a fair bit of time added on, Maynooth winning 2-8 to 1-7.
MAYNOOTH SLS: (Maynooth unless stated) Tom Kelly; Evan Moriarty (Ratahcoffey), Sen Mahon, Rory Byrden; Dan Farrell, Dan O'Meara, JP Heslin 0-1 (Rathcoffey); Conor Whyte, Daragh Finnegan (Celbridge); Ciaran Flanagan 1-1, Jack Munane 1-0, Sean O'Sullivan 0-2 2fs (Kilcock); Sean Hever 0-2 2s, Paddy Mahoney 0-2, Luke Jennings (Blackhall Gaels). Subs: Conor McBrierty for Luke Jennings (57 minutes).
GOOD COUNSEL: William Foley; Cathal Mooney 0-1, Billy Reid, Eoin Kennedy; Jake Molloy, Eoin O'Brien 0-1, Cillian Byrne; Peter McDonald, Ruairi Delaney 0-1; Sean Nunan 0-1, Eoin Whelan, Conor Foley; Cathal Parker 0-1, Gary Porter 1-0, Kyle Rankin 0-2 2f.
REFEREE: Ronan Devanney, Laois.
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