There was a tentative start to the match with both teams testing the opposition. Stephen Emmett, starting in the unusual for him position on the half forward line, opened the scoring with a point which Dunboyne cancelled with a point from a free. The Cilles lads proceeded to take control of the game and reeled of points from Danny McMahon, Jake Hannon, Eoin O’Neill and Gary McCloskey. The run was interrupted by another Dunboyne point before another Cilles point from Eanna Walsh was followed by a well taken goal from Gary. Dunboyne responded with a point before Donal Meagher finished another fine Cilles move to the back of the net. That left the Cilles ahead by nine points. As hard as Dunboyne tried their attacker’s were comfortably dealt with by the Cilles defense with Jordan, Fearghal, Shane, and Eoin in the full back line giving nothing away.
A run from their half back line resulted in the ball rebounding off the crossbar hitting Jordan on the back and ending in the net to cut the deficit to six points and gave huge encouragement to the Dunboyne lads. Further Cilles scores from Jake and Gary and a point for Dunboyne left the halftime score Cilles 2-08 Dunboyne 1-04.
Having made four personnel changes for the start of the second half Dunboyne enjoyed the majority of possession and reduced the deficit further with two points. A disallowed goal attempt by Dunboyne which would have reduced the margin to the minimum spurred the Cilles awake and points by Con Gordon and Danny restored some daylight between the teams. Another Dunboyne point led to a further three for the Cilles from Gary, Eanna and Donal. Dunboyne’s eight point was cancelled out by a fine 45 from Lee Browne. Not giving up Dunboyne got the last two scores with a goal and a point.Final score: Cilles 2-14 Dunboyne 2-09.
The Cilles made hard work of the second half but had done enough in the first half to lay the foundations for the win. The defense again contributed greatly to the win with some tremendous challenges and tackling to repel Dunboyne attacks. The full back line was ably supported throughout by the half back line of Eoin, Darragh and Shane who also managed to support the attack when needed. For the second match all starting forwards contributed to the scoring. Gary Mc was the leading scorer with a goal and three points from midfield. Nine players registering scores shows the potential of this group of players.
Credit is due the the fine Dunboyne team who responded well in the second half and fought for every ball to the end. It was a good day for the Cilles who had three lads who got their first taste of championship football with a few others making long awaited comebacks. This panel is growing in confidence and looking forward to the challenges ahead. The next championship match is scheduled to be against Duleek/Bellewstown.
Cilles: Jordan Browne; Fearghal Walsh; Shane Crilly; Eoin Sweeney; Eoin Woods; Darragh Brodigan; Shane Towey; Gary McCloskey(1-03); Lee Browne (0-01); Eanna Walsh (0-02); Donal Meagher (1-01); Stephen Emmett (0-01); Danny McMahon (0-02); Eoin O’Neill (0-01); Jake Hannon (0-02). Subs. Con Gordon (0-01) for Emmett; Matthew Breen for O’Neill; James McElearney for Hannon; Joe O’Toole for McMahon; and Darragh Kelly for Meagher.