Students Wing it Past Hoops!

(This article appeared in The Herald Striker Monday 21st March 2016)

Students Wing it Past Hoops

Farrugia, Perry to the fore as UCD take honours

Shamrock Rovers 2

By Ciaran Brennan

A SCINTILLATING opener to the Airtricity League U17 season. If this is the competition’s template we’re in for an exciting summer.
A south Dublin derby played on the Northside’s AUL. Both sides determined to mark the day with a win.
In the end it was UCD’s second-half powerhouse display which won the day. Wing masters Farrugia and Perry the victory instrumentalists.
Rovers started very brightly, Richie English threatening with every touch. Less than three minutes gone and UCD got their defensive calls all wrong. Goalkeeper Finn McGowan upended Shane Stokes in a foot race.
Referee Ciaran Redmond pointed to the spot and English did the rest. 1-0 Rovers.
The home side (yes this was a Rovers home tie!) were at their best now. English, Harry Cornally and Stokes busy in midfield with Mikey Nzingo adding impressively from left-back. Stokes, from a free-kick, forced McGowan to push out for a corner as Rovers kept up the pressure.
UCD clocked the pace of the game as the half wore on. Jack Ryan, Yaya Camara, Sean Quinn turning the tide in the middle third. Rovers ‘keeper Carl Casey made a fine save from Joe Manley following a corner. And with Brandon Perry and Neil Farrugia beginning to threaten down the flanks, UCD equalised midway through the half. Ryan’s second bite finding the net. The game’s high tempo barely dropped from there to the break, but the score remained at 1-1 to the half-time blow.
With UCD cranking up the pressure, Farrugia and Perry continued to influence matters in to the second half. Camara had a fine effort but his chip shot went over. Nzingo was yellow carded when he chopped down Perry following a great ball by Ryan. Farrugia thumping the resultant free-kick just over.
Soon after UCD hit the front with Farrugia again the provider. His pass found Quinn who slipped the ball past Casey in the Rovers goal for the lead.
Faruggia had another great effort cleared off the line after an attack along the goal-line but the winger did get his reward before the end.
Calvin Rogers took him down in the area having been fed by the lightening fast Perry, ref Redmond awarding his second penalty. Farrugia drilled it into the net to put UCD 1-3 ahead.
Rovers pressed hard over the remaining minutes and were given a lifeline when a Luke Kiely cross found Adam Doyle who scored to reduce the arrears. But UCD held on to take the opening day points.

Shamrock Rovers U17: Carl Casey, Calvin Rogers (Alex Kealy), Cian Collins, Declan Watters, Mikey Nzingo (Jason Byrne), Emmanuel Lawal, Richie English (Luke Kiely), Harry Cornally (c), Shane Stokes, Adam Dole, Dean Dillon, Ben Murray, Sean Callan.

UCD AFC U17: Finn McGowan, Evan Farrell, Dylan Rowe, Joe Manley (c), Luke Boore, Jack Ryan, Brandon Perry, Yaya Camara, John O’Kane (Sean McDonald), Sean Quinn (Ryan Meaney), Neil Farrugia, Mark Dignam, Luka Lovic.

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