Author: Mike Rafferty
~ 2 minutes read
Mike Rafferty in Tuam Stadium
Monivea-Abbey are treading new ground as they qualified for the Connacht Club Intermediate football championship final for the first-time ever following a nerve shattering one point semi-final win over Mayo champions Kilmeena in Tuam Stadium on Sunday.
With the old stand due to be demolished at the hallowed ground this week, it was lucky to survive the day as the roof was almost lifted off by the volume of cheering from Monivea-Abbey supporters when goalkeeper Denis Farragher saved a late penalty to allow them maintain their slender margin and a passage to the decider against Castlerea St Kevin’s next weekend.
Having weathered somewhat of a storm from the visitors in the closing quarter, Francis Roche’s charges were living off scraps and hanging on as the clock wound down. Then with time almost up a Darragh Slattery pass released Sean Ryder behind the defence and as Farragher advanced quickly off his line, he was adjudged to have fouled the attacker and a penalty was the award.
Darragh Keaveney had the option to go for a point to level matters and send the game to extra time or take his chance on getting the better of Farragher and get the match winning goal. While his penalty was not the most powerful effort, Farragher guessed correctly when moving to his left to push the shot away from the danger area.
However, the ball was not cleared and Keaveney got another bite of the cherry, but on this occasion his first-time shot flew across the face of goal and wide of the far post.
The long final whistle moments later saw an invasion of players and supporters down to the Monivea-Abbey goal area where they mobbed Farragher and afterwards the modest goalkeeper was taking it all in his stride.
Pictured: Paddy Mullins scores Monivea Abbey’s goal as Kilmeena’s John Ryan tries to close him down. Photo: Joe O’Shaughnessy.
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