Joe Mallon SFC 2017
A game which featured two sides who many have discussed as potential relegation candidates, both clubs would have been keen to put that threat to bed at the earliest available opportunity.
It went down to the wire, but Leixlip managed to come through with a couple of points to spare as they held on to a lead that they surged in to at the beginning of the second half through Eamon Murphy's goal.
Tommy Moolick was superb for the victors, while Johnny Doyle and Johnny Byrne led the fight for Allenwood, but they will have to win their next game if they're to avoid a relegation playoff for the second year running.
The opening exchanges were pretty tight, but the first score didn't take long to come as Johnny Doyle engineered a bit of space for himself before angling over a beautiful effort off the outside of his right boot from long range.
County man Johnny Byrne doubled Allenwood's advantage four minutes later when he made up serious ground to get on the end of a move to slot over a tidy point, but Leixlip took over for a period. Niall White got them off the mark with a superb point from the right wing, and it wasn't long after that when Tommy Moolick stamped his authority on proceedings. The Kildare midfielder took a quick pass from Brian Gibbons, brought the ball on 15 metres and thundered a shot into the bottom right corner of Ernie Price's net despite the Allenwood goalkeeper's best efforts.
Paddy Meagher added a good point to send them a couple of points ahead, before Moolick landed a fine long range score after upending an Allenwood defender who attempted to stop him in his tracks.
The game swung back in Allenwood's favour however, and it was Johnny Doyle who came to the fore once again. The ball fell to the veteran at the edge of the square after Johnny Byrne's shot was deflected, and despite Leixlip goalkeeper Shane O'Meara getting a strong hand to it, the ball rustled in the back k of the net.
Doyle and Martin Baneham swapped frees at either end before the break, meaning Allenwood went into the second half with a 1-4 to 1-3 lead.
Leixlip began the half in perfect fashion as Paddy Meagher stole in along the end line from the right handside and played the ball across to Eamon Murphy who simply palmed the ball into the net from close range.
Rather predictably it was Doyle who offered the response for his side, landing a point from 30 metres out under intense pressure, but Murphy followed up his earlier goal with a tidy point from close range.
Leixlip had a great chance soon after that to effectively put the game to bed when Moolick broke through in on goal, but Price blocked his effort, and when the ball fell to Evan Killeen he saw his shot scrambled off the line.
The game was heating up nicely at this point, and Cormac O'Toole's excellent score pulled Leixlip three points clear, but the cushion was cut back to two almost immediately when Doyle pointed after a fine run by Byrne.
Killian Darling and Meagher traded scores to set up an exciting finish, and when Eanna O'Neill impressively pointed from the left wing to cut the gap to one it looked like Allenwood were primed to secure a draw with a couple of minutes to go.
Leixlip never panicked however, and Moolick fisted over a late score to ensure Leixlip saw the game out with a certain degree of comfort.
Scorers for Allenwood: J Doyle 1-4(1f), J Byrne, M Baneham, E O'Neill and K Darling 0-1 each.
Scorers for Leixlip: T Moolick 1-2, E Murphy 1-1, P Meagher 0-2, N White and C O'Toole 0-1 each.
E Price; R Guilfoyle(J Travers 34mins), M Hogarty, M McCormack; S Conlon, J Byrne, J Wiltshire(D Byrne HT); E O'Neill, J Carroll; D Malone, J Doyle, L Lawless(K Darling HT); A Dunne(E Judge 53mins), S Dunne, M Baneham.
S O'Meara; R Doyle, K Conneelly, J Roche(C Dervan 58mins); C Fadian, T Gibbons, B Gibbons; T Moolick, D Gallery(E Killeen 40mins); N White, I Clancy(C O'Toole 44mins), R Fitzsimons, E Murphy, P Meagher, C Masterson(E Molloy 48mins).
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