Category: Archive

Henderson helps stingy Shamrocks win again

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

A Billy Henderson goal with eight minutes left, away to Banatul, allowed the Shamrocks yo win, 1-0, and keep pace with New York A.C. and the New York Albanians in the Cosmopolitan title race.

The Rocks actually third by virtue of goal difference, but if in an equal-points situation the lead were determined by least goals conceded or indeed by fewest defeats, they would be tops.

It’s been seven games since Kevin McPartland and his defense has conceded a goal, and only New York A.C. have taken full points from them, that a day when the Shamrocks had to play 75 minutes with 10 men.

The Rocks were not themselves in the first half. It took everything the strongest defense in the league had to hold the opposition at bay. The home team indeed, belied its lowly league position in that half, with some fine fluent attacking moves. Michael Bishop in particular was outstanding in the first period that ended scoreless.

John Guildea’s stern words and a defense splitting run by the aforementioned Bishop, set the tone for the second half. The Shamrocks turned the game and began to play to their capabilities. Robbie Walsh moved from defense to join the midfield and so counteract the 4-5-1 formation of the opposition. Ray Elsesser and Tim Cummins sprung to life and the Rocks machine was in motion again. The home team were finding it difficult to cope with the left-wing forays of Johann Lannon and the ‘rial power of Darren Thunder. As time wore on, though, it was beginning to look like another scoreless draw.

With nine minutes left, the deadlock was finally broken. A left-wing cross by Lannon skipped past several players on the difficult surface before falling to Billy Henderson. Henderson probably had time to settle himself, but instead chose to hit it first time. It was a decision that had the Shamrocks faithful collectively holding its breath, but the Scotsman proved it to be the correct option when he cracked the ball high into the Banatul net.

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Paul Wilson was outstanding in defense and Michael Bishop’s outstanding contributions earned him man-of-the-match honors.

Seconds, Thirds

Two goals from Kevin Brennan kept the second team in contention for honors. Eugene Smyth’s team won 2-1, but should probably have won by a far more comfortable margin. Dennis O’Boyle, John Guildea, Pete Hamill and Smyth himself had much to do with the victory.

Meanwhile, the Thirds’ frustration continues, as they again lost by a lone goal, this time to the Jams. Joe Mulligan, Terry Horan, Niall Carolan and keeper Andy Marcoons played well for Shamrocks.

Integral Kings 1 Rovers 1

The New York Irish Rovers’ unlucky spell continued when a last-minute goal denied them a hard-fought and deserved victory over Integral Kings. Inspired by the goalkeeping of Damian Doherty, Rovers took the lead with a penalty just before halftime. Give Tony O’Donnell a free shot at goal and there is only one outcome: 1-0. Rovers battled hard in the second half but a deflected shot robbed them of all three points.

Rovers Reserves 5, Integral 0

Rovers Reserves continued their rich vein of form with a demolition of Integral. Paul Keogh gave Rovers the lead, and John Enright and Eddy Beji added goals before the break. Paul McGlynn scored from a free kick, but the rout was completed with the best goal of the game, a spectacular flying header from Mick Carby. The Rovers maintain top spot in the bid for a hat trick of league championships.

Uniondale Over 30s 1 Rovers 0

Joe McGreevy’s Over 30s are assembling a strong squad and this was a test on a large pitch against the second-placed team in the league. The Rovers held their own, with Benny McIlarney outstanding at sweeper. Dave Quigley was below his best but still created problems for the defense. Nigel Cunniffe looked a little rusty and should have scored with a close-range volley. The only goal came from a penalty with 10 minutes left, after George Crooks was judged to have handled in the area.

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