Rockmount 0 Midleton 1 (James McCarthy 17)
Midleton are through the FAI Intermediate Cup 3rd Round after a hard fought but deserved victory over Rockmount last Friday night in wintry conditions.
It was a game of very few clear cut chances with both defences performing brilliantly on the night.
The decisive goal was well worked and despite Rockmount throwing the proverbial kitchen sink at the visitors, captain, Chris Collins marshalled his defence with aplomb and they refused to be breached.
The early stages were helter skelter with a half-hearted penalty shout from Midleton waved away by the official.
The goal came on 17 minutes when Kelvin Kruschel done brilliantly on the left wing jinking right and left before delivering a cross to the far post where James McCarthy finished brilliantly out of reach of Brendan O’Connell and into the top corner.
Rockmount responded with pressure predominantly from set pieces with Cian O’Driscoll unlucky not to finish at the back post from a corner which he put narrowly wide.
However, Midleton could have doubled their lead on 36 minutes when James McCarthy turned provider this time for Kruschel but he couldn’t turn the ball home from a narrow angle at the back post.
Conditions deteriorated in the second half with driving rain and the wind picking up and it marred the quality of the game somewhat with Midleton withstanding Rockmount pressure and looking to catch the hosts on the break.
Rockmount tried to go wide and down through the middle but even the early introduction in the second half of Alan O’Connor and Dean Leahy did little to breach a Midleton defence that stood firm.
And with Jake Hegarty and James Leahy willing runners, the threat of the counter was there for Rockmount to contend with, who in fairness, also defended superbly with Jason Sexton impressive in central defence.
Try as they might there was no way through for Rockmount and it’s Midleton who progress after a proper contest between two well matched teams with a solitary goal clinching the tie.
Rockmount: Brendan O’Connell, Cian Kelleher, Kenneth Hoey, Jason Sexton, Cian O’Driscoll, James Carson, Alan King, Danny Aherne, Kevin O’Connell, Niall Hanley, James O’Connell.
Midleton: Andrew O’Donoghue, James McCarthy, Kieran Mulcahy, John Keane, Chris Collins, Kyle McCarthy, Kelvin Kruschel, Seamus Farrell, Jake Hegarty, James Leahy, Emmett Cotter.
Referee: David Coleman.