IN the Murphy’s Irish Stout Match of the Week, League 2 leaders Blackstone Rovers came from one down before scoring two late goals to clinch the points against St John Boscos at the Fairfield.
And getting the nod for the man of the match award was Michael Twohig who scored the two goals near the end as well as put in a terrific shift in defence over the 90 minutes.
The contest itself was pretty much a dogfight over the duration as it was difficult for the two teams to settle it down due to a bumpy surface that both sides had to contend with.
Blackstone threatened after ten minutes when Warren Forde headed into the hands of McSweeney from Ciaran McCarthy’s throw ball.
But, what a chance fell for the hosts minutes later.
Ken Kearney shifted a ball into space for Ciaran McCarthy who set off towards goal, but with only the keeper to beat, he failed to direct his effort beyond the Boscos net-minder.
Another long throw from Ciaran McCarthy followed which Warren Forde once again got his head to – only to see Josh Deady produce a headed clearance off the line.
On the break, Paul O’Hanlon reached Simon McKeown with his cross, but Boland was quickly off his line to get in the way of the winger’s intended effort on goal.
O’Hanlon won good possession in midfield and after getting past two opponents, he was denied when Boland narrowed the angle enough to block the winger’s effort out for a corner.
A Boscos free kick followed and from James Wiggins’ delivery, Jamie Boland watched as Paul O’Hanlon’s header bounced before going over.
Minutes later; Cian O’Donovan collected from Ciaran McCarthy’s ball down the channel before attempting to reach Ken Kearney, but Sean Corcoran got in the way to head out for a corner.
Blackstone had a chance after that when from Cian O’Donovan’s corner, Calum O’Mahony failed to keep his header down while unattended.
Then, the impressive Darren Hosford was so unlucky to see his stinging effort from a free kick skid off the butt of the upright.
Hosford came close once again before the break when his hooked effort went narrowly wide.
Boscos threatened with just minutes into the second period when Killian Lynch found the supporting James Wiggins who lifted an inch-perfect cross for Barry Cahill whose header looked destined for the corner until Boland used cat-like reflexes to tip away to safety.
Blackstone then had a chance at the other end when Calum O’Mahony found Damien Doody in space, but he hurried his effort which skewed off target.
And after being awarded a free kick around 25 yards out, Darren Hosford saw his curling effort whistle agonisingly past the far post.
But, after Kevin O’Meara hammered the side netting with his effort, Boscos edged in front when following a free kick from Ashton Hanaway, Boland parried, but Fionn Keohane pounced on to the loose ball to drill home from inside the box on 70 minutes.
With the time ticking away, Blackstone were left with no choice, but to chase the game now and after Calum O’Mahony hooked inches over from Gavin Pepper’s free kick, Eoghan McSweeney was busy producing blocks from Calum O’Mahony, Kevin O’Meara and Michael Twohig in quick succession.
Blackpool’s persistence did pay off and following a corner, Colin Bevan headed across goal to where Michael Twohig lurked to stab home the equaliser on 80.
Another corner ball followed shortly after and it was Twohig again who was first to pounce and stroke home his side’s second with five to go.
There was no way back for Boscos at this stage as Blackstone held on to claim three big points.
Jamie Boland, Colin Bevan, Cian O’Donovan, Gavin Pepper, Michael Twohig, Damien Doody, Ciaran McCarthy, Warren Forde, Ken Kearney, Calum O’Mahony, Darren Hosford.
Evan Hourigan and Kevin O’Meara for Calum O’Mahony and Ciaran McCarthy (55),
Eoghan McSweeney, Eric Costigan, James Wiggins, Josh Deady, Sean Corcoran, Barry Fitzgerald, Killian Lynch, Brian Rogers, Paul O’Hanlon, Barry Cahill, Simon McKeown.
Ashton Hanaway and Tommy Laffan for Eric Costigan Simon McKeown (50), Fionn Keohane for Barry Fitzgerald (55),