Boardsmill and Carnaross met in this rescheduled 1st round JFC tie on Tuesday evening at Kildalkey. Both sides met at the same venue in the group stages last year and threw up a thrilling encounter with the North Meath side winning by the narrowest of margins.
Boardsmill set out their intent straight away with an excellent point in the opening minute from midfielder Cathal Wall. Carnaross soon found their scoring boots and scored two points in quick succession to take the lead. A Niall Durkan point from a placed ball and another from Evan Dixon following an excellent mark to put the ‘Mill back in front after 13 minutes. A converted free for Carnaross in the 15th minute left the sides level at the first water break.
In what was a relatively scrappy opening to the 2nd quarter, with a lot of frees conceded by both sides, Carnaross took the lead after 16 minutes and the Boardsmill crowd had to wait until the 24th minute to see their sides next score a 2nd point from play from Wall. Another pointed free put Carnaross back in front soon after before Meath Senior panellist Danny Dixon scored an excellent point from play for the ‘Mill to level proceedings again. Quickly after, a superbly worked movement with some excellent slick passing saw Evan Dixon blast the ball to the roof of his opponents net to give the Mill a 1-5 to 0-5 lead heading towards half time.
Despite being without Danny Dixon for the 2nd half having been substituted due to a niggly injury, Boardsmill took control in the 3rd quarter. Some great passages of play led to some well taken scores with five unanswered points for the South Meath side including four from Niall Durkan and an excellent point from attacking wing back Stevie Gibbons. This left the ‘Mill 8 points in front and Carnaross were dealt with a further blow on the 40 minute mark when they were reduced to 14 men following an off the ball incident after Boardsmill were awarded a free.
As often seen before, the sending off of a player seemed to spur on the offending team and Carnaross registered their first 2 scores of the half to reduce the deficit to 6 at the 2nd water break. Two more points from Carnaross’ centre forward soon after the resumption left Boardsmill’s lead down to just 4 points and they were struggling to get back into the game for much of the final quarter. With just 3 minutes of normal time remaining, Niall Durkan steadied the ship with a point from play before a superb effort from Evan Dixon from near the sideline left the ‘Mill with a six point lead heading towards the end of normal time. A Boardsmill win was beyond doubt when on the stroke of 60 minutes, substitute Johnny Mitchell handpassed the ball across the goals for fellow substitute James Durkan to fist the ball to the net. Niall Durkan scored his 7th point of the game soon after to give the ‘Mill a 10 point lead before two late consolation points were scored by Carnaross.
Overall a very good team display from the winners with wing backs Gibbons and Ray Hatton creating lots of great plays with their forward runs, whilst Kyle Dixon and Wall won the battle in the middle of the park with some great fielding. Up front Durkan, Danny and Evan Dixon and the evergreen Keith Hamilton were a constant threat to their opponents. Boardsmill meet St. Bridget’s in the 2nd round this coming weekend.
Boardsmill: 1. Jim Bird, 2. Conor Darby, 3. Conall Bird, 4. Cian Royston, 5. Ray Hatton, 6. Neil McLoughlin, 7. Stevie Gibbons (0-01), 8. Kyle Dixon, 9. Cathal Wall (0-02), 10. Liam O’Brien, 11. Keith Hamilton, 12. Jim Roche, 13. Niall Durkan (0-07 (0-05f)), 14. Evan Dixon (1-02), 15. Danny Dixon (0-01).
Subs: James Durkan (1-00) for Danny Dixon, Johnny Mitchell for Liam O’Brien.
Next up ….
Next up, Premier Football against Kilbride on Saturday in Boardsmill and Junior Football Round 2 v’s St. Brigid’s in Athboy on Sunday.
Congratulations to Enda Byrne and Eoghan Fitzsimons, Boardsmill Juvenile Hurlers who were 1st and 3rd in the Under 12 Meath Community Games Long Puck today at Cushinstown. Enda now goes on to represent Meath in the National Finals.