Michael Langan in action for St. Michael's v Four Masters Photo Thomas Gallagher
St Michael’s all but clinched their place in the quarter-final of the senior championship with a nine point win over Four Masters at the Bridge.
St Michael’s ………… 0-13
Four Masters ……….. 0-4
Andrew Kelly kicked six points, four of them from play, for the locals who led by five points at half-time having played with a strong wind in their backs in the opening half hour.
And they kicked on in the second half against a very defensive Four Masters who could only muster two points in each half and one point from play in the course of the 70 plus minutes.
St Michael’s led 0-7 to 0-2 at the break thanks to two points each from Michael Langan and Andrew Kelly and one each from Colin and Odhran McFadden and Stephen Doak.
Thomas McGowan, both from frees, scored the Four Masters points.
McGowan kicked the game’s opening score when he converted from a free on five minutes with Michael Langan opening the St Michael’s account two minutes later also from a placed ball.
With Four Masters packing the defence St Michael’s found it hard to prize open the visiting rearguard.
Andrew Kelly got in for a goal chance after ten minutes when Martin McElhinney intercepted a Martin Cassidy kickout.
But Kelly fired over with the goal gaping before he added St Michael’s third point shortly after, this time from a placed ball after Colin McFadden was fouled.
McFadden’s strong running caused Four Master a lot of problems down the left wing of the attack in the first half hour.
McGowan, again from a free, converted Four Masters second in the early seconds of the second quarter for a one point game, St Michael’s ahead 0-3 to 0-2.
The locals never rose to the level of flowing football they had produced in the first round 16 point win against Termon at the Burn Road.
But nevertheless they did hit four points as Langan, Colin and Odhran McFadden and Stephen Doak found the range.
Kevin McBrearty got Four Masters off to a flying start with a well taken point after a sweeping move in the second half.
But that was as good as it got for the Masters as Kelly and company played the possession game to great effect and hit five points without reply before McGowan converted for Four Masters fourth and final point.
Fittingly veteran Christy Toye who had a fine game in the middle of the field brought down the curtain on their scoring.
With a 16 point win over Termon and nine points to spare over Four Masters, St Michael’s are looking good for one of the quarter-final places. They are at home to Malin next weekend.
All is not lost for Four Masters, who face Termon next weekend at the Burn Road. Following their seven point first round win over Malin, a draw may be enough to qualify for place in the last eight.
ST MICHAEL’S: Mark Anthony McGinley; Jamie Hunter, Stephen Doak (0-1), Michael Gallagher; Michael McGinley, Ciaran Gallagher, Oisin Langan; Christy Toye (0-1), Michael Langan (0-2,1f); Daniel McLaughlin (0-1), Martin McElhinney, Colin McFadden (0-1); Hugh O’Donnell, Andrew Kelly (0-6,2f), Odhrán McFadden (0-1). Sub; Liam Paul Ferry for O McFadden, 54.
FOUR MASTERS: Martin Cassidy;John Boyle, Aaron McCrea, Daire Quinn; Barry Dunnion, Cathal Canavan; Barry Monaghan, Leo McHugh; Kevin McBrearty (0-1), Karl Lacey, Dylan Kennedy; Ciaran Monaghan, Thomas McGowan (0-3,2f), Michael Doherty.
Sub; Sean Meehan for Cathal Canavan 46; Patrick Reid for E Doogan, 51.
REFEREE; Connie Doherty (Naomh Conaill).