Elphin v Kilbride SFC 2007

Saturday, 21st July, 2007Elphin 2-10 Kilbride 0-8  This game was a contest between speed and brawn with Elphin running out deserving winners by double scores.The disparity in size between the teams as they lined out was patently obvious almost man-for-man, Kilbride towered over the home side. Elphin needed to adhere to a strict gameplan if they hoped to succeed. Of utmost importance was to prevent county star Seamus O’Neill from gaining a substantial foothold at midfield. The Elphin defence also needed to curb the influence of Stephen Lohan and finally, and perhaps most crucially, they needed to be clinical in front of goal.  Elphin ticked all of the above boxes in style. Although O’Neill and Gerry Lohan won a lot of clean possession at midfield, Shane Tiernan and Brian Higgins competed strongly enough to limit their influence. Stephen Lohan had a fine game at full-forward for Kilbride. His darting runs caused panic on occasion in the Elphin full-back line, but again, Brian Cregg adequately dealt with Lohan’s threat.The scoring stats speak volumes about Elphin’s performance in front of goal.  They scored ten points and kicked just five wides over the hour. They had two real goal chances and they took them both in style. What was apparent right from the throw-in was that Elphin’s pace would cause Kilbride endless problems. With centre-forward John Collins exerting an enormous influence on proceedings, Elphin were only ever headed by a point.   Indeed, they never relinquished the lead they took in the 18th minute. Kilbride went in front in the third minute Eddie Lohan stroking over a free following a foul on Seamus O’Neill. Elphin’s reply was almost immediate, with Colm Rock shooting over following a swift attack involving Brian Higgins and Stuart Roddy.The game then descended into a period of stalemate with the sides shadow boxing each other without causing any real damage. Lohan split the uprights with a ‘45 in the 13th minute, but again, Elphin responded Collins scoring from a 30yard free.Three more points in a three minute period from Shane Tiernan, Stuart Roddy and Colm Rock between the 20th and 23rd minutes left Elphin ahead by 0-6 to 02. Kilbride, to their credit, lifted their game and Lohan scored two points to leave the half-time score 0-6 to 04 in favour of Elphin.  Elphin opened the second half at break-neck speed. Colm Rock stroked over a beauty from a very acute angle after six minutes. Two minutes later, Roddy rattled the crossbar with a thundering drive after being put in by Higgins. Thirty seconds later, Collins knocked over a free to put his side ahead by double scores. The same player extended the lead to 0-9 to 0-5 with a converted tenth minute free. Kilbride raised their game once again and clawed their way back to a two-point deficit through three Eddie Lohan frees in the 14th, 20th and 21st minutes. But when it looked as if they might just pull this game from the fire, Elphin struck for the game’s decisive score.   Colm Rock sent a garryowen into the Kilbride square. Patrick Fox collected the breaking ball and coolly slotted past goalkeeper Jonathan Farrell.Elphin now led by 1-9 to 0-7 and were well on their way to victory. Both sides exchanged points Collins for Elphin in the 26th minute and Eddie Lohan in the 27th before Fintan Cregg put the icing on the Elphin cake with a goal two minutes from time.
Source: Match Reports