Blessington U16A 3-2 Terenure U16A Sun 14th September
The opening day of the season proved to be a fruitful one for Blessington U16A against a strong and dogged Terenure team. It did not start well for the Blessington lads however as within the first 25 minutes they were down 2-0. Up to that point Terenure did indeed have the better of Blessington but eventually Blessington settled down.
The five man midfield of Jack Allen, Paddy Schofield, Niall Bray, Jonathan Devoy and Gary Walsh from then on were effective in stopping the advancing Terenure team and within a few minutes, a combination of passed between Niall Bray and Gary Walsh set Sean Mescall up with a chance which he confidently slotted home. Blesso were back in the game. Terenure 2 Blesso 1.
The Blessington back line of David Bird, James Jackson, Robert Bytiqi and captain Deirmuid Nugent stood up to the Terenure attacks well after the Blesso goal and looked more and more comfortable as the half wore on, as too did stand-in goal keeper Adam Cooney who stood in for the injured Conor Harper for the first half.
At half time Ciaran Mescall was introduced and Adam Cooney moved to right back with David Bird in the centre allowing James Jackson to put on the gloves for the second half.
If most of the first half belonged to Terenure, the majority of the second half belonged to Blessington.
Blessington started the second half well, moving the ball around magnificently using the full width of the pitch. Gary Walsh worked hard on the right and often got the better of his opponent on what was a warm day indeed. On the left too Ciaran Mescall used the space well and was served well by the central midfield pairing of Paddy Schofield and Niall Bray who both looked skilful and confident all game.
It was during one of these passages of play, with intricate passing movements that the ball eventually arrived at the feet of Ciaran Mescall who with a fabulous strike beat the keeper and the ball finished in the back of the net.
Despite this setback for Terenure they never gave up and did have a number of chances from set pieces but all ended up wide. There were another one or two balls through the middle also which were cleared by the on rushing Blesso stand in keeper for the second half James Jackson who looked comfortable between the sticks.
The last twenty minutes it was all Blessington as the Terenure lads visibly tired from their efforts. The Blesso lads seemed to get stronger as the pre-season fitness regime introduced by new coach Andy Howard benefited them and they were visibly the fitter team at the finish. It was obvious that fitness was indeed an issue as the Blesso lads were allowed more and more time on the ball and created a number of chances at the end. As time went on a draw looked more and more likely but with just a few minutes to go the ball broke to Sean Mescall who calmly moved the ball left and right to set himself up and slotted the ball home from about twelve yards.
Blessington defended very well in the second half and a special mention must go to Robert Bytiqi who playing out of position had a very good game as too did Adam Cooney playing on the right. The centre back pairing of Deirmuid Nugent and David Bird were solid all half. Jack Allen was tireless and as a defensive midfielder who looked busy and more confident as the game wore on. A special mention must go to Gary Walsh who had a great game and should be praised for his battling second half performance.