Pike Rvs 3 Janesboro 3
The last couple of weeks in local soccer there has been an air of despondence with objections, appeals and uncertainty.
Well for this of us privileged to be in attendance, Pike Rvs and Janesboro provided the perfect antidote playing out a thrill-a-minute game that had everybody glued in position until the final kick.
The game was a credit to all involved and proved that there is no substitute to letting the football do the talking.
Two of the best goalkeepers in the business pulled off superb saves while two of the best finishers of the last 20 years Shane Clarke and Jonathan Grant gave an exhibition of finishing.
It was impossible to pick a man of the match as players came to the fore at different times but Niall Hanley, Colin Daly and Shane Walsh would all be in the mix.
In an incredible game Janesboro ran Pike ragged for much of the first half and raced into a 3-0 lead.
They targeted the Pike rearguard fancying their aerial strength and it paid dividends when Shane Clarke and Adrian Power scored near identical goals within a couple of minutes, racing through the heart of the Pike cover to score.
When Pike were pinged for a deliberate back pass Shane Clarke blasted past a crowded goal line from 6 yards and it looked game over.
However before the break a superb goal by Jonathan Grant put a different slant on thing in the half time team talk.
On the restart Pike took command of the game with Janesboro relying on breakaways for respite.
Conor Kavanagh pulled one back from the spot after a tackle on Steven McGann and it was game on.
Pike piled on the pressure and got their reward with another typical Grant goal from close range to set up a nail biting finale.
Try as they might with efforts from McGann, Paddy O’Malley and Colin Daly Pike just could not get the breakthrough.
The last action of the game saw Grant denied his hat trick by the upright to end a superb game.
The result leaves Pike Rvs four points behind Boro with two games less played but the matter of an Janesboro’s objection to an illegible player with Regional could well determine the title.
Pike Rvs; Gary Neville, Wayne O’Donovan, Eddie O’Donovan, Adam Lipper, Ian Fletcher, Jonathan Hannafin, Colin Daly, Conor Kavanagh, Shane Walsh, Jonathan Grant, Steve McGann, Subs, Evan Patterson, Eoin Hanrahan, Paddy O’Malley
Janesboro; John Mulready, Danny O’Neill, Ryan O’Doherty, Tom Clarke, Lee O’Mara, Mike Ryan, Niall Hanley, Aidan Hurley, Adrian Power, Keith Mawdsley, Shane Clarke, Subs, Dylan Kelly Higgins, Andy Murphy