Inspired by Damien Dunleavy’s clinical finishing from the penalty spot, Lansdowne avenged their 4-3 Cup loss to Celtic on Sept. 8 with a 4-2 result in a keenly contested match.
“We finally scored some goals when we were supposed to,” said Eamonn Duffy, the Bhoys’ relieved president, who’d seen his side fail to convert chances in their two previous outings.
Celtic boss John Marron, however, disputed the two penalty decisions that broke his team’s back.
“The first one was a bad call and the second one against the rules,” he protested.
Marron admitted that although there was contact in the first instance, between Celtic defender Winston McCoy and an opponent when the former went up for a header, the ensuing penalty decision was harsh.
At any rate, Dunleavy’s effort (15th) from the spot was canceled out a minute later when Celtic’s Tunisian forward Raafet Olian pounced on a miscue by the goalie.
Celtic then took the lead on John McCoy’s striker (25th), before another Dunleavy penalty (40th) put the Bhoys’ level.
Marron’s complaint this time centered on the validity of his goalie, Lenny Lorenc, being punished for shoving a Lansdowne player with the ball not in play.
Dunleavy’s second spot kick seemed to knock the stuffing out of Celtic, who faded after the break.
C.J. Doherty (55th) and John O’Driscoll (65th) went on to secure the win for the Bhoys.
“We played well until the first 15 minutes of the second half, then we lost interest,” said Marron.
Duffy concurred. “We dominated the second half,” he said. “A pretty solid all-around team performance.”
Earlier at Van Cortland, Stephanie Bliss had a goal in the Lansdowne women’s 1-1 tie with Manhattan Kickers in the Metro League.
Joe Butler struck twice, albeit in vain, as Astoria Gaels were brought crashing back to earth by Central Park Rangers after the previous week’s 3-1 Metro Div. 1 romp over Lansdowne.
CPR posted a 4-2 victory at Randalls Island after being pegged twice by Butler’s brace.
The striker chalked up his first in the 30th minute — in response to Vlad Thelisma’s opener (15th) — when he buried a rebound from a Brendan O’Reilly free-kick.
Butler was on target again after Ken Howe had restored CPR’s lead, finishing off Nestor Allen’s excellent square ball. But further strikes by Thelisma and Dave Lovercheck consigned Gaels to their first defeat of the young season.
“We put an awful lot of pressure on them in the first half but couldn’t get the goals,” said Gaels defense kingpin Eugene Kyne who sat out the game.
Kyne singled out defender Michael Coyle, substitute Stephen Mullins, Derek McKenna, Butler and Allen for their outstanding play.
For the second match in a roll, Shamrock’s luckless Metro side was beaten 1-0 after giving up a late goal.
Kandia’s Layton Mattis was the Shamrock slayer this time after connecting on the stroke of full time in a match shortened to 70 minutes by mutual consent on account of the looming darkness.
Willie Murphy and Andres Killika both hit the bar for the Rocks, edged by an 88th minute Barnstonworth Rovers goal the week before.
“He was way off side,” Shamrock’s Sean Keogh said, disputing Kandia’s winner. “We hit the woodwork twice but just couldn’t put it away.”
Shamrock’s first team found CSL defending champs New York Albanians a tough nut to crack at Evander Childs High School, succumbing 3-1 under in their first match of the season on Saturday night.
Hughroy Daley (60th) had the lone response to the blitz by Roland Demo (30th), former Albanian international Naum Kove (50th) and veteran striker Tony Camaj (70th).
Shamrock pride was, however, salvaged by the reserves who produced an impressive 4-1 win, courtesy of Barry Fitzgerald, Darren Thunder, Mark Dillon and Ari.
Goalie Paddy Maloney also had a great game for the reserves.
In the “B” Division, Shamrock’s Over-30 side continues to experience growing pains after their 4-1 collapse to Brooklyn Celtic at Jacob Reis Park.
John Guildea drew first blood for Shamrock against the run of play (30th), although it didn’t take long for Eaves to tie the scores before half time.
It was all Celtic in the second half with goals by Danny Shields (70th), Scotsman Sean Conaghan (72nd) and 49-year-old super-sub Paddy O’Sullivan seeing off the rocky Shamrocks.
“It was a pretty hard day at the office,” quipped goalie Kevin McPartland, who together with forward Dennis Frawley is back in the Shamrock fold.
“The first half was pretty even, and then we fell apart,” observed Eugene Smyth.
Ronan Downs’s New York Athletic Club rebounded from the 4-0 pasting by Pancyprian Freedoms in their league opener on Sept. 15 to beat Barnstonworth Rovers 3-1 at Travers Island.
Former MetroStar Brian Kelly led NYAC with two goals (25th, 60th), after Adam Petrowski (20th) had broken the ice.
“We were by far the better team. It was one way traffic,” said Downs, who, unlike the week before, had a full team, including newcomer Mark Semioli (another ex-MetroStar), at his disposal.
NYAC’s reserves won 4-0.
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Norman Pile grabbed an 85th minute to lead the Mike Fitzgerald-coached Manhattan Kickers to a 3-2 over Koha in their First Division debut at Commodore Barry Field.
Rich Webb (20th) and Scott Conti (75th pen) were also on the mark for Kickers, who trailed 2-1 at one point. Mesudin Mecovic got both Koha goals.
“There’s no question about it, [Koha] are a good team. It was a well deserved win,” remarked Fitzgerald, who also doubles as Kickers’ goalie.
Koha’s reserves triumphed 3-2 despite a Kickers fight-back inspired by big Owen Idehen, who had a goal and earned the penalty from which Wes Connelly tallied.
Zander Price, Paul Wasserman, Andy Stewart-Jones and Yannis Legakis struck in ASA McCarthy’s 4-1 Metro Div. 2 romp over Magura at Randalls. Bobby Davidov got the Bulgarian’s face-saver.
Also at Randalls, GH Metros lost 1-0 to Brasil, whose Oscar Schenone scored.
“We made on mistake and were punished. We will be back next week,” said Metros coach Rory Finn.
Finn was missing key players, including his son Rory, Steve Bodden and Guyla Hegyi