Cumann Pheadaír Naofa 4-13
Bosco 3-8

With the division 4 team earning a very spirited draw on Sunday, it was time for the division 1 side to do likewise on the other side of the city. On a warm sunny evening the Cumann Pheadaír Naofa U12 footballers travelled to St Patricks primary school in the Meadow for the Div.1 return fixture and having totally outplayed and dominated their opponents a few weeks ago at St Marks, the Bosco were hoping to lure the young blues into a surprise upset with a much smaller and tighter home field. The blues had travelled minus the services of influential play maker Seamus McNulty and with an injury to Niall Rice curtailing his attacking runs into the heart of defences this game was set to be a lot different than the previous meeting. From the off a point from David Ruddy was quickly cancelled out when Bosco played the ball in quick to their speedy full forwards and a low shot to the net had Ben Elmore beaten. Cumann Pheadaír Naofa forward Callan Morgan received a good pass out from defence, he turned and played a pass through to Jack Cole for another Cumann Pheadaír Naofa point. Almost with a minute the same two boys again linked up for a third blues point, but no sooner had they drawn level than Bosco stepped out in front with a point of their own. Another attack by the blues saw the quick thinking Tiernan McGivern round his marker and agonisingly hit the post with his effort as Bosco flooded their defence to quell the Warrenpoint threat. By now Jack Cole was turning his man regularly and proved to be a real handful for the Newry side, notching a further two points, the second of which was goal bound but for a fantastic deflection over the crossbar. Tiernan Burns and Darragh Austin were very strong and composed in defence as they kept calm when put under pressure to find team mates Caolan Freer and Jamie Powell, between them they battled and contested every ball as Bosco tried to get their big half forward Josh more on the ball to put pressure on the blues defence. A tactic that eventually paid off when they took a three-point advantage with a goal and a point. In what must have been the play of the half, saw Ben Elmore gather the ball, some slick passing down the line involving four blue jerseys ended with a Jamie Powell point. An unstoppable shot from the boot of Jack Cole saw the blues get their noses out in front again, a lead they were not to lose but made work hard for until the final whistle. Further points from Callan Morgan, James Murphy, Jamie Powell and Niall Rice helped to keep daylight between the team as Bosco managed to take advantage of a defensive lapse for their third goal. With half time nearly up a James Murphy goal saw the blues take a half time lead 2-10 to 3-3.

When the match resumed a fantastic defence splitting pass from Jack Cole saw Niall Rice give the Bosco keeper no chance, but this was to be the Warrenpoint side last score for a further 10 minutes as Bosco slowly but surely crept back into the game scoring five unanswered points. The blues were rattled, as Bosco were now just two points down and were playing great football and were most unfortunate not to have taken the lead when a long speculative ball into their danger man bounced over the head of the Warrenpoint keeper but the in rushing forward could only deflect the ball onto the post with an empty net on offer, as it bounced back into play he managed to get a better connection with the boot but saw his shot scrambled off the line by the combined efforts of Caolan Freer and Darragh Austin. It wasn’t until the final five minutes that the blues gathered their composure and edged further ahead on the scoreboard with Niall Rice and David Ruddy popping over two close in frees. With only a minute left on the clock it was then that Jack Cole, who had an outstanding day in the blue shirt received a pass out on the left wing and his attempt at dropping the ball over the bar dropped short and over the head of the Bosco keeper for his second and Warrenpoints fourth goal of the day.

Overall this was a thoroughly enjoyable game with some thrilling football and the big crowd was kept entertained until the final whistle as Bosco very nearly surprised a strongly fancied Warrenpoint side.

Towards the end of the first half Tiernan Burns, who was having a very good game in the backline sustained a bad injury to the hand, the Cumann Pheadaír Naofa management would like to extend their good wishes for a speedy recovery and return to football.

CPN were: Jack Cole 2-4, David Ruddy 1-4, James Murphy 1-1, Niall Rice 0-3, Jamie Powell 0-1

By Dermot Tue 24th May