DOUGLAS Hall and Leeside played out an enthralling tie in the Dennehy’s Health and Fitness U15 Division 4 at Moneygourney on Sunday, with the latter coming out on top of a seven-goal thriller to keep their promotion hopes alive.
The game got off to a slow start, both sides battling in midfield but neither creating any opportunities.
It was Leeside who had the first chance of the game inside five minutes, Lorcan Nolan finding himself in space in the area but being denied by goalkeeper Conor Dooley. The away side continued to press on after this, stringing together some passes and looking good going forward.
The game was a scrappy affair early on, with neither side really able to get any fluidity to their performance, perhaps an indication of how closely matched the teams were.
On 13 minutes, however, against the run of play, the home side found the opener. A through ball down the left found Sean O’Flaherty who composed himself and finished well into the far bottom corner.
The game started to open a bit more after the first goal, Douglas Hall gaining confidence and starting to play between the lines a bit more.
But, just inside the 25-minute mark, Leeside had a corner from the left and the impressive Oran Barrett rose highest in the area to equalise for his side.
Leeside then went in front immediately after the restart. The ball was played forward and Johnny Fitzgerald who laid it off to Darragh Long in the area, finishing well to put his side in front for the first time.
Long nearly had another minutes later, played through after an error at the back but seeing his effort go just to the left and wide.
The visitors started to get on the front foot, Rueben Coady with a long-range effort that went just wide.
A minute later Leeside had another, this time Fitzgerald forcing his way through into the area and firing the ball into the bottom right corner.
Ten minutes into the half the home side pulled one back, Rory Denn impressively rounding the keeper in the area and coming up with a calm finish.
Douglas Hall started to come back into the game after this having been overrun for the first few minutes of the half.
With 15 minutes to go Conor McLoughlin blew the game wide open, his brilliantly struck free kick from the edge of the box going in off the post, providing a worthy equaliser for the home side.
With just two minutes left on the clock, Leeside had a corner from the right. For the second time in the game, the formidable Oran Barrett rose above everyone in the box to head home at the near post.
But still the Leeside keeper James Casey had to pull off a brilliant last-gasp save to secure all three points for his side.