Mellows Survive Late Charge

Liam Mellows 2-16 Pearses 2-14: Mellows led for most of this Relegation clash played at Duggan Park last Saturday. When the city men struck for a second goal 19 minutes into the second half they opened a nine-point lead. Like the St Thomas’ game, Pearses finished strongly and two late goals cut the margin to just two and Mellows were no doubt relieved to hear the final whistle.
The city team hit three early wides, before Kerrill Hardimanandamp;nbsp;opened Pearses’ account, with a long range point. Mellowsandamp;rsquo;andamp;nbsp;stormed back, hitting 1-3 in a seven minute spell. The goal from County player, Aonghus Callanan, cutting in the from the left corner to blast home. Another Hardiman point got Pearsesandamp;nbsp;goingandamp;nbsp;again. Mellows landed the next two points, before two Tomas Flannery points and a Jimmy Gelston sideline cut,andamp;nbsp;made it 1-5 to 0-5 after 18 minutes. The next four points were shared evenly, Flannery (free) and Shane Rafteryandamp;nbsp;theandamp;nbsp;Pearses scorers.andamp;nbsp;
Mellows tagged on three more points to Pearses’ one (Flannery) in the andamp;nbsp;12 minutes before half-time. Referee Christy Browne played six minutes injury time, as Pearses centre-back Shane Raftery sustained an injury leading to him being replaced. Half-time: Liam Mellows 1-10 Pearses 0-8.
Mellows extended their lead to seven not long after theandamp;nbsp;restart. The teams then swapped two points each (Flannery and Ronan Bellew for Pearses), 1-14 to 0-12. Mellows were looking good for a win, with John Lee and Tadgh Haran leading the way. Two more Flannery frees cut the gap, but Mellows struck what looked like a killer blow, 1-1 in two minutes. Adrian Morrissey with the goal, 2-15 to 0-12.
Pearses didnandamp;rsquo;t give up and outscored Liam Mellows 2-2 to 0-1 in the final 13 minutes (including injury time). Two Jimmy Gelston points (one a 65) were followed by Mellows last score. Then in the 29th minute Gary Lally was fouled for a penalty. Emmett Ward’s initial effort was blocked, but the Referee ordered a retake. The keeper was off his line. Ward buried the secondandamp;nbsp;attempt. Anotherandamp;nbsp;attackandamp;nbsp;and the ball broke to Ronan Bellew who made no mistake from 21 yards, 2-16 to 2-14. However it was too late for anotherandamp;nbsp;assault on the Mellows goal, as the final whistle went less than aandamp;nbsp;minute later.
With a -1 scoring difference, Pearsesandamp;lsquo; canandamp;rsquo;t top the Group, so will enter a Relegation Semi-Final, against either Kinvara or Kiltormer. Liam Mellows or St Thomas will fill the fourth semi-final spot.andamp;nbsp;
Pearses: A Kilkenny; A Kenny, T Kenny, P Raftery; B Egan, S Raftery (0-1), K Hardiman (0-2); J Gelston (0-3), A Bellew; R Bellew (1-1), T Flannery (0-7), S Hardiman; G Lally, E Ward (1-0), E Cunniffe. Subs used: D Wynne, R Lally, R Donnellan, N Skehill.