HomeFootballWexford U-20 footballers falter in final quarter against Longford

Wexford U-20 footballers falter in final quarter against Longford

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A disappointing last quarter fade-out led to Wexford’s exit from the Under-20 football Andrew Corden Cup at the semi-final stage in Newtownforbes on Tuesday.

Hosts Longford hit six points without reply into the breeze from the 46th minute onwards to set up a midlands derby decider away to Westmeath.

Wexford led by 1-7 to 0-7 after a run of three unanswered scores from Dylan Cooke-Leonard, Cathal Kehoe and captain Conor Kelly, but a Longford side inspired by outstanding full-forward Matthew Carey finished with a flourish.

Wexford fared well into the elements in the first-half at the Clonguish club grounds, with a cracking 22nd-minute goal by impressive midfielder Cathal Kehoe after a James Lawless run helping them to forge a 1-2 to 0-4 interval lead.

Longford star Carey kept his side in touch with all four points, but the wasteful locals also registered nine wides.

Rory Gilbert first-timed the ball over the bar just twelve seconds into the new half after Kehoe won the throw-in before his long delivery was misjudged by a Longford defender, and Dean Kehoe also picked off a fine point as Wexford led by 1-4 to 0-6 after 40 minutes.

Matthew Carey equalised from a free before those three points in two minutes left Wexford looking good entering the last quarter (1-7 to 0-7).

The introduction of Jack Belton was a key factor in Longford gaining a foothold at midfield after Cathal Kehoe’s heroics, and they drew level in the 51st minute before two Matthew Carey frees and a closing point from Paddy Moran made sure of their final spot.

Wexford: Eoin Blanchfield; James Doyle, Sean Nunan, Conor Kelly (capt., 0-1); Ruairi Martin, Cathal Murphy, Connor Mackey; Sean Hughes, Cathal Kehoe (1-1); Morgen Ellis, James Lawless, Micheal McGonigle; Dean Kehoe (0-1), Rory Gilbert (0-1), Dylan Cooke-Leonard (0-3, 1 free). Subs. – Brian Roban for McGonigle (50), Liam Donoghue for Ellis (51), Cormac Kiely for Mackey (54), Cormac McGee for Lawless (59), Tom Quigley for Murphy (60).

Longford: Oisin McManus (capt.); Conor Smith, Ruairi O’Toole, Eoghan Williams; Gavin Farrelly, Andrew Flynn, Jonathan Burke; Oisin Flynn, Caolan Lynch; Brian Mulvey, Matthew Flynn, Paddy Moran (0-1); Michael Flynn (0-1), Matthew Carey (0-9, 5 frees, 1 ‘45), Jamie Brady-Hynes (0-2). Subs. – Ross Shields for Williams (HT), Padraig Boyle for Matthew Flynn (43), Jack Belton for O. Flynn (45), Ronan Courtney for Lynch (52), Harry Kiernan for Mulvey (52).

Referee: Enda Kelly (Westmeath).

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