Parnells won their final game of the season v Wandsworth Gaels 2-10 to 2-08, League Champions and promotion to Div. 1. The culmination of an unbeaten League campaign albeit much later in the season than it should have been. A resounding victory in the Senior Championship relegation play off a couple of weeks earlier gave them they momentum they were looking for.
The team took to the field minus three key players, (Captain Luke Horgan, goalkeeper Fraser Beckles and defender Eoin Cullinan) who were unable to be there, with one aim in mind, a win and promotion. Connor Spinks put the first points of the game on the scoreboard and a goal from Tighe Barry and a point from Ryan Forde saw Parnells close off the first half leading 1-05 to 1-04.
The team in the second half showed collective unity and spirit, each player fighting for the ball, a determined and dogged defence shutting Wandsworth Gaels down, their only scores from frees and a late goal in extra time. Connor Spinks continued making the most of his scoring opportunities with points and a goal which came from a splendid pin point kick out by goalkeeper Ruairi O’Connor, received in mid air by Josh Obahor and one pass to Connor Spinks who made it his business to stick it in the back of the net. Both full back, Eoghan Reilly and right half back wanted action further up the pitch and also scored a point each.
Parnells led by six points at one stage in the game but Wandsworth Gaels kept the pressure on right up to the final whistle during a long period of extra time but the team kept going with the second half seeing four substitutions for Parnells who added extra impetus on the field of play. When the final whistle went, game over but the celebrations only beginning.
Parnells would like to thank their opponents Wandsworth Gaels and wish them luck in the next round of the All Britain Championship. Also to John Doyle the referee and to St Kiernan’s for facilitating the game and providing the officials. Most of all, the club want to thank their supporters, families and friends who come to our games and give the vocal encouragement from the side of the pitch or stands when needed.
The management of the team- Tony Griffin, Jim Rice and Brian Heneghan- have been there all season, every training session and match for this team and the reserves. They deserved this result and can now take a breathing space, though unlikely if you know this trio! A massive ‘well done’ to them. A great support at training in terms of sorting equipment out has been Daniel Twomey, we thank him for all his help. Also not forgetting John O’Sullivan who has been ever present as well or our physio, Matt Freany who has enabled the team to play throughout the season and his contribution cannot be underestimated. Last but not least, all the players who in the blistering sunshine in the summer, or on wet and windy days in early spring and autumn who have given up their time to get this result and the Reserve League win: every single one of you, irrespective of what team you have played for, are the most fantastic bunch of lads who support each other and deserved the success we have had and to be both Senior and in Division One next season.
Team on the day
1 Ruairi O’Connor (wearing 16) 2 Neil McNamara 3 Eoghan Reilly (0-01) 4 Denis Twomey 5 Sean Rice (0-01) 6 Darragh Griffin 7 Donnacha Byrne 8 Brian Foody 9 Ryan Forde (0-01) 10 Josh Obahor 11 Tighe Barry (1-00) 12 Jamie Murphy 13 Niall Twomey 14 Kieran Rice 15 Connor Spinks (1-7)
Substitutes: 17 Brian Quinn 18 Aaron O’Reilly 19 Jojo Owolabi 20 Jack Flannagan for Denis Twomey 21 Aidan Brennan for Ryan Forde 22 Ciaran Griffin for Niall Twomey 23 Conall White for Jamie Murphy 24 Richie Dempsey 25 Brian Heneghan