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1985 Westmeath Intermediate Championship Final

Caulry triumph in exciting second-half

Caulry 2-09 
St. Paul ’s 1-04 

Caulry continued their unbeaten run in this years Intermediate Football Championship when they stormed to a well deserved victory over St. Paul’s in the Intermediate football final at Cusack Park, Mullingar on Sunday, to capture the title for the third time in the clubs history. 
Not since 1978 when they were beaten 1-6 to 1-5 by St. Mary’s did Caulry reach the Intermediate final and Sunday’s win was fitting reward for a young side which played through the championship campaign as if they were already champions. 

St. Paul ’s on the other hand were viewed before the game as the more experienced side. They won the championship in 1977 when they defeated Ballynacargy 0-4 to 0-1 and they last reached the final two years ago when they were defeated by Tyrrelspass. 
However, on Sunday their downfall was a lack-lustre second-half during which they fell apart as a team, and allowed a fired Caulry side to score 2-5 and only managing three points in return. 

St. Paul ’s began well and opened the scoring tally just a minute and a half into the game when a foul on left full forward, Anthony Geraghty was rewarded with a free which was converted by right-half forward Eugene Dolan. 
Playing with a stiff breeze at their backs and possessing the psychology advantage of the first score, St. Paul’s exerted a tremendous pressure on Caulry for much of the half. In particular their forward line of Tommy Carr, Johnny Garry and Anthony Geraghty, backed up by Eugene Dolan and Pat Clancy, ensured that the Caulry defence was stretched by attack after attack. 
However, a failure to convert their dominance in this area into scores, particularly the many point opportunities, quickly fashioned itself into the hallmark of their game which was to lead eventually to defeat. 
Inside the first ten minutes both Pat Clancy and Johnny Garry had shots wide from scoring positions and the inevitable happened when referee Gerry Carton of Kilbeggan awarded Caulry a free directly in front of the posts after on of the St. Paul’s players questioned his decision on an earlier infringement, Caulry were then put on the score sheet with a point from Aidan Dunning. 

St. Paul’s were quick to reply however when Martin Carr at centerfield gained possession and covered a lot of ground to fist the ball onto Pat Clancy who managed to evade Tommy Woods of Caulry and shoot a fine goal from about 30 yards pout. Although shaken the Caulry side held firm and some fine fielding by the half-back line led to another point, this time from Johnny Kenny. 
St. Paul ’s continued to press their advantage, but the inability to take quick points was demonstrated by Eugene Dolan who missed at least two chances before Caulry again demonstrated their ability to take quick points with a fine shot by Johnny Kenny from 20 yards out. 
As the half drew to a close Caulry managed to contain much of the play at centre-field and despite some breakthrough attempts, St. Paul’s failed to gain any scoring advantage with Caulry left to take another point by Richie Allen from a free just on the half time whistle to leave the side level at 1-1 to 0-4 at half time. 

St. Paul’s began the second half with only two changes in position when Eugene Dolan went into the top left hand position and Anthony Geraghty moving over to right half forward, however, Caulry soon went ahead with a good point from P.J. Allen who narrowly missed an attempt at a goal following a furious goalmouth tussle two minutes into the half. 

Now it was Caulry’s turn to pile on the pressure, and pile it on they did. The St. Paul’s defence wilted under a ferocious onslaught and their only method of reply was to clear the ball every which way – much to the frustration of the half-forward line whose only recourse was to fall back into defence. 

Woods for Caulry who played a sparkling game showed his form again with a fine point from play leaving the score at 1-1 to 0-6 in favour of Caulry. The St. Paul’s mentors brought on substitute Liam Hyland in place of Martin Carr but this was little respite for a beleaguered side which had yet to take play out-side its own half. 

As St Paul’s continued to flounder in their own area, some 19 minutes into the half, another substitution was tried, with Jimmy Henry replacing Anthony Geraghty while from the Caulry bench T.P. Hickey was brought on to replace P.J. Allen. 
In their final attack of the game, St. Paul’s then managed to emerge from their own half, and as if conscious of earlier missed opportunities, they scored three quick points in succession from Jimmy Henry and Eugene Dolan. In the following minute Johnny Woods for Caulry scored a quick point to signal a renewed burst from the Southern team which put Niall Donohue in scoring position to take a good point from 40 yards leaving the scored board reading 1-4 to 0-8 for Caulry – just a point separating the sides with just over 5 minutes left to play. 
Once they were on top, however, Caulry conscious perhaps of how close they were to the elusive title, determined to forge further ahead and Johnny Woods was quick to oblige with another point from play in the 25th minute. 

Vital Score 
One minute later came the score that landed the title in the Caulry camp. Following a protracted goalmouth tussle Johnny Kenny gained possession and managed a tight turn and kick at the same moment to ballast the ball past St. Paul’s luckless goal-keeper Tom McNamee. Just two minutes later Kenny surfaced again having shaken defender Michael O’Reilly and a clever ball from peter Rigney left him on his own with nobody to beat but the goalkeeper. His shot was firm and true leaving McNamee again sprawled on the ground and the ball in the net. 

Kenny’s goal was the icing on the Caulry cake and before St. Paul’s could recoup for even the semblance of a fight back, referee Garry Carton had blown the final whistle signalling the end of the game and a place in the history books for the Caulry 15. 

Caulry – J. Kenny(2-2), J. Woods(0-3), R Allen, P.J. Allen, A. Dunning and N. Donohue (0-1 each). 
St. Paul’s – P. Clancy (1-0), Eugene Dolan (0-2), J. Henry and T. Carr (0-1 each). 

Caulry – Tony Mulvihill, Tommy Rigney, T.J. Dunning, Anthony Allen, Seamus Dolan, Richie Allen(capt.), Tommy Woods, Johnny Woods, Tom Fallon, Pierce Gately, Peter Rigney, Niall Donohue, Aidan Dunning, Johnny Kenny and P.J. Allen. 
Subs: T.P. Hickey for P.J. Allen. 

St. Pauls : Tom McNamee, Joe Gilsenan, Michael O’Reilly, Tommy Cuneen, Pat Gilsenan, Ritchie Shaw, Gerry Kelly, Michael Geraghty, Martin Carr, Eugene Dolan, Christy Shaw, Pat Clancy, Tommy Carr, Johnny Garry and Anthlony Geraght. 

Referee : Gerry Carton (killbeggan) .

Extracted from the Westmeath Independent Archives