Our u13 A team played their first game in the national cup on Saturday against Holycross from the Limerick County league. There is always a little more excitement when playing a team from outside the Kerry league but the lads were very focussed for this one.
From the off we were in control of the ball around the middle of the field with Conor Kerins, Sean O’Connor and Josh Connolly playing really nicely and getting the ball forward to Cianan Cooney, Colin Doody and Messiah Chirwa. We had a couple of early half chances but it wasn’t until Colin latched onto a ball on right, got to the by-line and played a lovely cross to Cianan who coolly took control and finished to make it 1-0 to the Park. This was what the lads deserved. Samuel, Kieran O’Connor, Jack Kearney and Sean Hill were very solid at the back and whenever they needed they were comfortable playing the ball back to Liam who was very composed with his feet.
A one goal lead is always dangerous and we had a few chances to increase that but the Holycross goalkeeper was having a great game. The second goal did come and again came from the right. This time Messiah went on a run and crossed to ball to Colin who finished well to put a bit of daylight between the teams. We continued to press for the rest of half but no more goals were scored. HT 2-0
While happy with a lot of the work in the first half there was plenty of room for improvement in the second half. David Feely, Danny Jeffers, Ben Hanafin and Adam Wharton came in to the side. It is always important to get a third goal and finish the tie. For the early parts of the second half the Goalkeeper was keeping out everything that Park were throwing at him. Eventually though the pressure paid off and Cianan coming in from the left scored to make it 3-0. Arguably the goal of the match came soon after when a ball broke to the edge of the box where Danny ran on to it and hit an unstoppable shot to the net to make it 4-0. The final goal of the game went to Cianan who got his second hat-trick in two games. FT 5-0.
Well done to all the lads. We are looking forward to the next round of the cup but plenty of work to do before then.