SAFC: Mark Buckley in top form for Dohenys in win over Knocknagree

A place in the semi-final is the reward for the Dunmanway side after a dominant display at Páirc Uí Rinn
SAFC: Mark Buckley in top form for Dohenys in win over Knocknagree

Dohenys' Barry O'Donovan under pressure from Knocknagree's Fintan O'Connor in the SAFC clash at Páirc Uí Rinn. Picture: Denis Boyle

Dohenys 1-12 Knocknagree 0-7 

MARK Buckley’s 1-5 proved to be the difference between Doheny’s and Knocknagree in Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday evening as the west Cork side booked their place in the last four of the Bons Secours Cork SAFC with a fine victory.

Dohenys led by 0-5 to 0-3 at half time but Knocknagree were a different animal on the resumption. They were physically dominant with captain Killian Buckley and midfielder David O’Connor both exerting an increased influence on the game.

They had their first-half total doubled within six minutes. David Twomey got a point to reward his endeavour, Fintan O’Connor added to his tally before David O’Connor put his side back in the lead with a rousing score.

Doheny’s were struggling to make an impression up front, but Rhys Coakley brought them level when he kicked a fine score after injecting some much-needed pace into their attack.

It was a real war of attrition now, as both sides waited for somebody to take control of the game as they entered the second water break, deadlocked at 0-6 each.

Knocknagree seemed to hold a slight advantage but now it was Buckley’s time to shine. In the forty-ninth minute, Jerry McCarthy broke from the Doheny’s half-back line and carried the ball up the field before finding Buckley with a lovely pass. The corner-forward swivelled his hips, turned for goal and crashed the ball past Patrick Doyle and put his side in pole position.

Energised, the Carbery side drove home their advantage with two points from White and they now had one foot firmly in the semi-final. Fintan O’Connor briefly offered Knocknagree some hope with his fifth point but Doheny’s were rampant now.

Johnny Kelly and Niall Hurley pushed them further ahead before that man Buckley finished his evening in style with the last two scores of the game.

The occasion seemed to get the better of both teams from the off. They were ponderous in possession, lateral in their passing and all too often, the final ball went astray. Keith White put Doheny’s ahead with a free after two minutes and Buckley doubled their advantage with a fine score from play moments later.

Knocknagree were level by the eighth minute through two Fintan O’Connor frees but after that, the scores dried up. There wasn’t much in the way of action either as the game trundled along, slowly.

Knocknagree were feeling the loss of Eoghan McSweeney through injury. They adjusted by starting Michael Mahoney in the forward line but his presence up front robbed them of his effective running from deep.

Dohenys then suffered their own injury blow when Fionn Herlihy tweaked his hamstring coming up to the water break. The former Cork U20 player didn’t emerge afterwards as he was replaced Rhys Coakley.

The stalemate had gone on for thirteen minutes before O’Connor finally broke it with a super score from play to give the Duhallow side the lead for the first time. Buckley brought the Doheny’s level with a free moments later as the sides couldn’t really have been more even. They were tied on three points apiece, three wides apiece and two efforts dropped short apiece as half time loomed.

Crucially, the west Cork side finished the half the stronger. Buckley landed another free before a superb score from distance from midfielder Eoin Lavers gave them a 0-5 to 0-3 interval lead.

That lead was eight by the game’s end as Doheny’s blitzed their opponents and their reward is a crack off top seeds St Michael’s in the semi-final.

Dohenys' Eoin Lavers tackling Alan Sheehan, Knocknagree. Picture: Denis Boyle
Dohenys' Eoin Lavers tackling Alan Sheehan, Knocknagree. Picture: Denis Boyle

Scorers for Dohenys: M Buckley 1-5 (0-3 f), K White 0-3 (0-2 f), E Lavers, J Kelly, R Coakley, N Hurley 0-1 each.

Knocknagree: F O’Connor 0-5 (0-3 f), D O’Connor, D Twomey 0-1 each.

DOHENYS: S Daly; J Farrell, S Daly, D Rice; B O’Donovan, J McCarthy, C Barry; C O’Donovan, E Lavers; J Kelly, C O’Shea, B Murphy; F Herlihy, K White, M Buckley. 

Subs: R Coakley for Herlihy (inj, 17), N Hurley for O’Shea (51), K Cotter for O’Donovan (57), D Collins for Kelly (61).

KNOCKNAGREE: P Doyle; A Sheehan, D O’Mahony, G O’Connor; D Cooper, K Buckley (c), M Doyle; D O’Connor, D Moynihan; M Mahoney, G Looney, J Dennehy; D Twomey, JF Daly, F O’Connor. 

Subs: P Collins for Moynihan and M Dilworth for Cooper (both 47), D O’Connor for Twomey (51), T O’Mahony for Dennehy (55), A Sheehan (black card, 62).

Referee: Robert Whelan (Aghada).

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