Coach Billy Henderson described the Verazzano field as the worst he’s seen in the country, but that didn’t stop his side from venting its frustration for ceding the title race to Pancyprian Freedoms on Rovers.
Robbie Walsh, who put in a yeoman’s effort after starring in the reserves’ 3-0 winning performance, opened the scoring in the 15th minute to put the Rocks ahead.
Hughie Daley made it 2-0 in the 65th minute, and after Rovers’ Barry O’Driscoll had briefly reduced the arrears, Lucky Williams struck (70th) to restore Shamrock’s two-goal cushion.
Timmy Cummins sealed the rout five minutes from time, as the Rocks (9-4-1, 28 points) consolidated their hold on second position ahead of this weekend’s big clash with Ronan Downs’s third-place New York Athletic Club at Msgr. McClancy High School in Flushing, Queens.
“We’ve gotten back to winning again. It was a good day for us,” Henderson said.
Barry Farrell (8th), assisted by Robbie Walsh; Tom Whitty (70th), on a Terry Sykes assist, and John Walsh (80th) were on the mark as the Shamrock second team blanked their Rovers opposites 3-0 to take over the First Division Reserve leadership from idle NYAC.
Undefeated Shamrock improved to 9-0-4 (31), two points ahead of once beaten NYAC (9-1-2) who have a game in hand.
The Reserve championship could be decided this Sunday when the two teams meet at Msgr. McClancy High School.
The Shamrock thirds completed a successful weekend for the Sunnyside-based organization by grounding out a goalless tie with Astoria Gaels in an Irish local derby at Msgr. McClancy.
Astoria’s Brendan Reilly, a former Shamrock man, was a persistent thorn in the flesh for his former side in the Metro Div. 1 tussle that the Rocks’ Sean Keogh summed up as “a good, hard, tough game.”
“We could have beaten them, but a tie was a fair result,” Keogh added.
The point from the draw moved Shamrock 1-10-4 (7) one place out off last place at the expense of BW Gottschee who were trounced 5-1 by Krimean Turkish at Randalls Island.
Lansdowne Bhoys are within grasp of the Metro Div. 1 championship after thrashing Central Park Rangers 5-1 at Van Cortland Park.
Player-coach Damien Dunleavy set up John O’Driscoll for the Bhoys’ ice-breaker in the third minute and by half time, the home side was cruising courtesy of a Mogo Flood brace (23rd, 43rd penalty).
Central Park pulled a goal back through Frank Tuscano five minutes into the second half, but their challenge was killed off by two more goals by O’Driscoll and Michael Walsh.
“In all fairness, the scoreline flattered them. But they’re still a good team,” Central Park’s Steve Roberts conceded.
Despite second-placed Kandia’s 3-2 decision over Barnstonworth Rovers at Randalls Island, where Dorian Green, David Taylor and Chris Pammand scored, Lansdowne (12-1-2, 38) can clinch the title with a win over lowly BW Gottschee on Sunday.
In other Metro Div. 1 action, Ian Woodcock’s 80th minute header from a corner earned Manhattan Celtic a 1-0 result over Gotham FC in a middle of the table clash at Randalls Island.
“We should have beaten them by more than one goal. We played very well,” said Martin Swift.
Brendan Watkins notched ASA McCarthy’s consolation goal in a 3-1 defeat by Bergen Kickers at Overpeck County Park that put a dent in the visitors’ Metro Div. 2 championship hopes.
McCarthy (8-5-2, 26) now trail leaders Clarkstown by six points with three games remaining.
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Danny Shields (15th) and Eddie (70th) were on target in Brooklyn Celtic’s thrilling 2-2 tie with Central Park Rangers in an Over-30 match at Dyker Field.
Shields canceled out Chris Johnson’s go-ahead-goal for CPR (10th), while Eddie had Celtic, second in the “B” Division (West), on course for their tenth victory of the season before Ernesto Teran leveled five minutes from time.
CPR had player-coach Drew Faherty, their starting right back, to thank for the draw after he capped an impressive performance as Rangers’ stand-in goalie by saving a second half penalty.