IFC: Corduff cruise past Éire Óg
McGuigan Builders Intermediate Football Championship First Round
Corduff 2-8 Éire Óg 0-3 12/6/11
Corduff carried their impressive league form into the championship when they eased past Éire Óg in a one-sided IFC game at Clontibret on Sunday. First-half goals by Raymond Byrne and Declan Larkin had Corduff in control and they never looked like letting Éire Óg back into the game. Last year’s JFC winners Corduff have now gone 12 championship games unbeaten and could be in the shake-up on this evidence, even if Éire Óg were very poor opposition. Keith McEnaney, Ciarán Brennan, Pádraic Keenan and Declan Larkin impressed for Corduff, while Shane and Cathal Connolly were on top in midfield. Conor Ward, Marc McBride and Darach McCluskey were best for Éire Óg, whose star forward Paddy Croarkin had an off-day.
Corduff signalled their intentions right from the throw-in as Brendan McNally set off on a run towards goal in the first minute and it took a perfectly-timed tackle by Conor Ward to dispossess him. Corduff didn’t have long to wait, though, as Martin Mills kicked the game’s first point and they added a goal on three minutes when Raymond Byrne punched a Keith McEnaney centre to the net. Éire Óg’s woes were summed up when the usually reliable Paddy Croarkin missed a close-range free, although they did eventually get off the mark on 16 minutes when Enda Doran tapped over after a Marc McBride ’45 dropped short. Keith McEnaney converted a 25-metre free for a foul on Pádraic Keenan for Corduff’s first score in 20 minutes and the county Under-21 quickly tagged on a point from play. Corduff all but settled the game in the last minute of the half when Declan Larkin charged forward onto a pass from Mills and drilled a low shot beyond the reach of Éire Óg keeper Paul Hand. That put Corduff eight points clear (2-3 to 0-1) at half-time.
Corduff made another goal chance less than a minute after the restart when Keith McEnaney released Byrne, but his shot was blocked by Fergal Sheridan. Keith McEnaney tapped over a brace of 20-metre frees, before John McEnaney kicked a good point from play to push Corduff further clear. Seán Flynn blazed a goal chance over the bar for Éire Óg after good approach play by Croarkin and Johnny McMahon, before Keith McEnaney kicked his fifth point of the game. A late tackle on Keenan allowed Mills to send over a 20-metre free and although Éire Óg got the last score of the game through a 40-metre free by McBride, after a foul on Paddy Skeath, it was little consolation to the Smithborough men. The draw for the qualifiers provided some solace, however, as Éire Óg received a bye.
Corduff: C Marron; S McNally Jnr., C Brennan, P Keenan; C McEnaney, D Larkin (1-0), G King; S Connolly (Capt.), C Connolly; T Mee, M Mills (0-2, 1f), J McEnaney (0-1); R Byrne (1-0), K McEnaney (0-5, 3f), B McNally.
Subs: G Mee for Byrne (48 mins), A Ward for K McEnaney (54).
Éire Óg: P Hand; C Ward, D McMahon, D McCluskey; S Flynn (0-1), P McKenna (Capt.), F Sheridan; M McBride (0-1f), C McGorman; E Doran (0-1), P Sweeney, C Toal; D Tierney, P Croarkin, J McMahon.
Subs: R Cassidy for Toal (23), M McQuaid for Tierney (36), P Skeath for Doran (44).
Referee: M Conlon (Castleblayney).