Mixed Fortunes for the Rocks

The Shamrocks first team suffered a heavy 7-0 defeat against Cedar Stars Academy on Saturday night in Long Island. The CSL Division 1 front runners continued their fine run of form with an impressive display of attacking football against a Rocks outfit deprived of several key players.

“We were missing five starters in Giuseppe, Charlie, James Whyte, Gianfranco and Stuart through suspension and the flu,” said Kevin Grogan. “That makes it very difficult against a team that has full time professionals playing for them. We will bounce back. You don’t become a bad team overnight. This is a test of character for us now. Massive cup game next week against Beyond in the Kilby Cup quarter-final.”

In the battle of the reserves, a Shamrocks 4-1 loss to their Cedar counterparts made for a bad night overall for the club. As with the first team, Dan Meola’s boys were heavily depleted in numbers by the coincidence of this important match with Timmy Fetherston’s wedding. With the gaffer himself leading from the front, the reserves dominated a game for which the eventual scoreline paid flattery to the opponents. Failing to finish their chances when it mattered, the Shamrocks were faced with plenty of time to ponder this rare loss on a very long ride home. The wound of defeat was somewhat soothed on Sunday as top of the table rivals, Lansdowne Bhoys, failed to take advantage by only drawing away to Manhattan Kickers.

The Women’s A team cruised to a 5-2 victory against an unergetic Fuel FC on Randalls Island.  The Rocks opened scoring early with Mikaela Howell’s 4th goal in 2 games.  Shortly after, Kelci Hegg won the ball on the edge of her own box and sent a long through ball to Chloe Wheeler who made it 2-0.  The third rocks goal came from Jackie Pounder who struck from a deflection off a Mikaela Howell effort.  Teresa Ferraro scored the fourth and Chloe Wheeler added her second of the game (and fourth in 2 matches) to make it 5-0.  After completely dominating the first half, the rocks conceded a goal against the run of play right before half time.  Fuel added a second goal in a less exciting second half, after which the score remained a safe 5-2 for the Rocks.

Coach Keith Perez commented “We had a dominant first half and really controlled the game and the score line in that time. Goalkeeping from the other team really kept the score from getting out of line in the first half.  We lost momentum and didn’t really connect as well in the second half. Nonetheless the ladies did what they needed to do to secure the victory.  We will look to improve on that second half as we head into the tougher games our schedule.”  The rocks head into a tough 2-week period where they face their rivals for the league title, CPR and New York Magic.

The Women’s Shamrocks B rebounded from their previous loss to record a 3-1 victory against NY Skulls on Sunday Morning at Randalls Island. Goal scorers were Colleen Cavanaugh, Brandi Daniels, and Anastasia Hagan, with assists coming from Patty Kwiecinski, Shannon Hopkins, and Brandi Daniels respectively. Even though the NY Skulls were pressured from the opening whistle, the Rocks started out behind by conceding half way through the first half.  The Shamrocks stayed composed and continued to press, which led to Cavanaugh’s equalizer 10 minutes after Skulls’ opener.  The pressure of the first half really wore on the other team, as the second half was controlled by the Rocks with goals coming from Brandi Daniels and Anastasia Hagan.  Coach Keith perez commented: “It was a team effort today, as players stepped up to fill our goalie needs and the ladies rallied around one another to help secure a victory.  We still have alot to fight for and improve on this season, but this win is a start and we will look to continue this success in the next match.”

Paddy McCarry’s enigmatic genius continues to boggle onlookers as he managed to lead his over-30s to a 11-0 victory against Central Park Rangers without even turning up to the match. Left in the capable hands of Sean McMullen, the over-30s ran riot and left the poor Rangers re-arranged and deranged by their blitz-style of attack. There were five goals from an outstanding Johnny McGeeney, a hatrick from the ever-incisive Sean Riley, a brace from the bracing play of Dave Harvey, and one for the ubiquitous Paddy Geraghty, who spends his spare time making cameos for the Legends and coaching one of the women’s teams.

Texting from his secret bunker somewhere in Long Island, the insatiable McCarry stated: “Another clean sheet and it sets us up nicely for our state cup quarter final away to Port Jefferson next week. We are hitting form just at the right time.”

Times are getting dark for the 1960s, who suffered a bad loss in the relagation battle against Deportivo Sociedade New York. Hit early on by two lightning quick goals, the Shamrocks missed a penalty after Joe Flynn’s effort was saved. Despite not sending off the Deportivo defender for a last man foul that led to the spot kick, the referee applied the proper rule to Neil ‘Begby’ Mannion for commiting the same act two minutes later. Down to ten men and facing a possible 3-0 deficit, the Metros were given a life-line by a great save from Eric Doyle. This was followed quickly by an excellent goal from Joe Connolly, who had a really impressive performance throughout the game. A second half equalizer from top scorer Dan Meola was matched by another from Deportivo, which in turn found a response through Connolly’s second. However, the battling and hardworking 1960s were to find no joy on the day, as the the impressive attack of Deportivo broke through one last time to score a winner with five minutes to go.

“We’re in a real relegation dogfight now,” barked coach Andy Connolly. Brimful of cliches, he went on: “But there’s still hope if we continue to fight and stay calm under pressure. Mick McAnea showed today how a reall warrior continues to battle against the odds. The others fought hard, too. If we can keep working for each other and fix some of our defensive errors, it’s possible to stay up.”

In the Over-38 League, somebody sabotaged the pitch and the Shamrocks Legends’ game was postponed as a result. As of this minute, Tyrone Kent, who is never short of finding an excuse not to play, is the main culprit. Eddie Gilmartin is being fingered for the getaway driver. No doubt Justin ‘my dog ate my shin guards’ Stanford will provide their alibi.

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