It was a big step up in class for Bright on Friday night in Liatroim. Our first game in the intermediate championship was never going to be easy but an Annaclone team that ran through last years division 3 were always going to be a very hard team to overcome.
Bright came into the game well prepared and got off to a great start, exchanging points with Annaclone in the opening minutes. Scores from Cormac Mc Laughlin, Gareth George and Sam Dinu helped settle any nerves and good control of the half-back line from Niall Byrne, Declan Trainor and Callum Laird kept the red and green jerseys in their own half for the most part, but an Annaclone goal put 4 points between the teams after 17 minutes, a gap that would be very hard to fill.
Bright’s Task got a lot bigger after they were left with 14 men on the pitch when Pearse McCarthy received a red card midway through the first half. Caelian Toner and Sam Dinu had some promising runs through midfield but most of Bright’s opportunities were snuffed out by a very disciplined Annaclone defence.
Although there were 6 points between the teams at half time (1-6 to 0-3) Bright still seemed to be in the game. However, early into the second half, the gap left by Mc Carthy at half-forward was becoming more noticeable as Bright struggled to get the ball far enough up the pitch to take shots.
Points from Sam Dinu, Declan Trainor and a goal (Penalty) from Gareth George kept Bright in the game but were always answered with quick reply from Annaclone.
The pace at which Annaclone was able to play late into the second half was a credit to their stamina and conditioning. The last 10 minutes were played almost exclusively in the Brights half with Annaclone seemingly scoring at ease against a tiring Bright side.
Bright’s first venture into Intermediate football didn’t go as planned, but a lot of positives can be taken from the game! There were very little wides, our stamina held up for most of the game against a division 2 team, and with only 14 men for most of the match, the scores were kept to a minimum for 40 minutes.
We go again.