Once again, home advantage appeared to be important across the four tiers of the Limerick Desmond League. There was a full round of Premier Division games with the Division nearing the half-way point. With three sides destined to be relegated, there will be some nervy games in the latter half of the season.
Weekly Observer Premier Division
Ballingarry 3-3 Kilcornan
Ballingarry showed quality powers of recovery to come from behind against Kilcornan. Trailing 3-1, they rescued a point at home against Gary Manning’s resolute men. Kilcornan are yet to register a win but five draws in six can be taken with some positivity. Patrick Ivess and Mark Curran accounted for the visitors goals with Kevin Forde in reply. The striker helped himself to two more, to complete his hat-trick and continue Ballingarry’s decent run.
Granagh Utd 0-5 Broadford Utd
Granagh United released home advantage, somewhat, by moving this tie to Charleville astro-turf on Friday evening. Broadford weren’t under any pressure, with John Hayes opening the scoring inside 15 minutes. Further strikes from Michaél Brosnan (2) and Derry McCarthy had it 4-0 after just over 30 minutes. The final strike came from McCarthy to seal back-to-back wins for Jim Neenan’s side.
Glin Rovers 1-1 Newcastle West Town
There was a draw in Corbery Estate with Newcastle West providing some late drama, not for the first time this season. Glin had lead from around the quarter hour, thanks to Zak Behan, all the way through. They were four minutes from taking a crucial win, but a penalty from Shane Stack meant the points were shared.
Breska Rovers 3-1 Abbeyfeale Utd
Clarina’s Breska Rovers were deserving winners over an out of sorts Abbeyfeale United, to move onto ten points. Prolific frontman Keith McNicholas was included from the start and just beyond the half-hour mark, he expertly chipped the United keeper from 30 yards for the opener. Young striker Mark Moroney buried the second on the stroke of half-time. Rory O’Brien got Abbeyfeale back into the tie on 50 minutes and John Kelliher’s side dominated the next 20 minutes. But Breska had the final say with Ethan Keyes finishing on a counter attack after some quality work from sub Karl Buckley.
Creeves Celtic 0-1 Rathkeale
There was a tight, tense local derby between Creeves and title favourites Rathkeale. Goalkeeper Aaron Hogan proved to be the hero, saving a penalty from Eoin McEnery. Before that, Eoin Barry had converted from a Gary Enright corner for the only goal of the game. Rathkeale strengthen their spot at the top, with 18 points from a possible 21. Creeves remain the relegation zone, yet to claim their first league win.
Weekly Observer Division 1
St. Itas 2-3 Rathkeale B
Rathkeale B picked up an away win, coming out with the odd goal in five against St. Ita’s. They had goals from Keith Hartnett, Lee Wilmott and teenager Oscar Markham, racing into a 3-0 lead. The home side fought back to 2-3 but Rathkeale were able to see out the win. Rathkeale climb above St. Ita’s in a congested midtable.
Shountrade AFC 2-0 Athea Utd
The biggest shock of the season in the second tier arrived when Shountrade halted Athea’s gallop towards the League title, for now at least. Most impressively was keeping a clean sheet against a normally free-scoring Athea outfit. Goals from Patrick Whelan and Tim Frawley did the damage at the other end. Shountrade remain bottom, with this their first win of the season. They are still five points behind the safety zone which is now Dromore United (8th). They move two behind Newcastle West Town Reserves who are 9th.
Askeaton AFC 2-0 Dromore United
Askeaton kept their interest in gaining league honours alive, with a home win against Dromore United. Goals in either half were the difference against the recently crowned Divisional Cup winners. Cian Smith opening the scoring, rounding the keeper before applying a calm finish. Cian’s brother, Stephen netted the second from the spot, with Dromore United playing the second half with just 10 – following a red card near the half-time break.
Weekly Observer Division 2
Abbeyfeale Utd B 1-1 Mountcollins AFC
Goals from Culann Quigley (Abbeyfeale) and Kieran O’Donnell (Mountcollins) meant it was spoils shared in the local derby against the Leagues most western sides. Abbeyfeale have five points from three games, with Mountcollins winless from six.
Weekly Observer Division 3
Shannonside FC B 2-1 Dromore Utd B
There was a first win of the season, as Shannonside pulled off a quality win at home to title-chasing Dromore United. Goals from Mike Behan’s penalty and Tony Doyle did the damage. The result gives Shannonside a welcomed boost after some heavy defeats earlier in the season.
Carrig Celtic 2-1 Broadford Utd B
Goals from Donie Nolan and Cormac Mann helped Carrig shade this tight contest. They join Feenagh and Breska Rovers in a tight 3-5th place
Feenagh 5-1 Breska Rovers B
The winners got off to a flying start with a penalty in the opening exchanges. They were 3-0 by half-time before it was 4-0 before the hour mark. Dan Gayer saved a Breska penalty, before he was beaten with the second Rovers spot kick. The home side closed out the scoring for a comfortable win.