‘Blast from the Past’: Season 2009/10
CCFL Senior Division
Portlaoise off mark!
Mountmellick United 1 Portlaoise AFC 3
The two sides had entered this tie in contrasting fashion. While a youthful Portlaoise side had been beaten at home by champions Willow Park Mountmellick had a surprise win away to Mullingar Athletic on the opening day of the new season. Alas for Mountmellick they didn’t extend that form into this tie as Portlaoise; bouncing back impressively from that opening day defeat, cruised to the win on this occasion.
The hosts started very tentatively and were soon made to pay the pricce by a slick Portlaoise outfit. The visitors capped off a very bright opening quarter of an hour with a delightfully-worked goal. A sweeping move down the right flank ended with an angled cross into the box and young Nathan Carpenter was on hand with the requisite finish. To their eternal credit Mountmellick then began to dominate the tie and got a deserved equaliser twenty minutes later. Robbie Hibbits got on the ball a full twenty-five yards out from goal and he whipped a ball in that decived everyone and ended nestling in the back of Danny Brown’s net.
On the resumption of play Mountmellick had the lion’s share of possession but didn’t take the chances that fell their way. The closest Mountmellick got to taking the lead for the firstr time was when Mark Goodwin’s free flew bending and dipping toward the Portlaoise goals. Alas for Goodwin Browne pulled off a staggering save to deny the home outfit. Eventually Portlaoise began to play again and were soon celebrating retaking the lead. Again Carpenter was on hand to put the finishing touches to a flowing Portlaoise move with a clinically-taken goal. Mountmellick’s woes increased minutes later when Martin Hilliard; availing of some slack Mountemellick defending; angled his free header past a helpless Martin Forde in the home goals.
A plain-talking Paul Lee; Mountmellick’s manager, commented afterwards that Portlaoise ” deserved it ( the win )” and that ” ( Portlaoise) had “played nice stuff”. Mark Parkinson, Robbie Hibbits and Jason Fitzgibbons were Mountmellick’s star performers while for Portlaoise the accolades must go to the goal-getters Nathan Carpenter and Martin Hilliard.
Mountmellick United: Martin Forde; Jason Fitzgibbons, Alan Reddin, Mark Parkinson, John Goodwin; Mark Goodwin, Mark Grennan, Jody Davis, Edward Melia; David Kelly Subs Used: Robert Dempsey for J. Davis ( 50′ ), David Forde for D. Kelly, Paul Davis, Alan Reddin.
Portlaoise AFC: Danny Browne; Niall Guilfoyle, James Furlong, Brian Bowe, Alan Bell; Mark Brennan, Wayne McFaul, Evan Reddin, Nathan Carpenter; Jo Jo Salmon, Martin Hilliard