The James Connolly Albany Rebels split the results in the second round of New York Cup action, losing to the Buffalo Fenians and defeating the Syracuse Gaels on July 8 at Cazenovia Park in Buffalo.
The results level Albany and Buffalo at the top of the table, each with an overall record of 3-1 and 1-1 in the head-to-head tiebreaker. Syracuse is 0-4.
Albany started the day as spectators, as Buffalo and Syracuse opened match play. Buffalo won that game 0-11 (11 points) to 0-5 (5 points).
Following that match, Albany took the field against Buffalo. The Rebels started in bright fashion, taking an early lead. Buffalo fought back and the match went into the halftime break with a tied score of 1-3 (6 points) to 1-3 (6 points).
Albany started the second half strongly, with Ian Maher racing down the field from the toss-in to score a goal. Though, minutes later, the tide turned on Albany as Maher was sent off after a rough tackle, leaving the Rebels a man down for the remaining 15 minutes of the game.
The Rebels were valiant in their efforts to preserve a three-point lead, but Buffalo’s possession play proved to be too much. Albany ultimately succumbed, losing 1-9 (12 points) to 2-4 (10 points).
The Rebels bounced back with a crucial win against Syracuse 3-6 (15 points) to 2-7 (13 points). With about five minutes left, and the match tied, Maher made up for his earlier infraction and scored a goal to restore Albany’s lead. In the final moments, the Rebels defense did just enough to preserve the win.
WIth Albany and Buffalo even in the New York Cup standings, the title will go to the winner of their match on August 5 in Albany, regardless of their results against Syracuse.
"After such a strong start to the NY Cup in Syracuse, we were disappointed to lose by only two points to Buffalo," said Rebels chairman Cillian Flavin. "Playing a man down took a lot out of us, but we defended resolutely and made Buffalo earn the victory. We will have another crack off them at home and hope to finish our first competitive season on a high note."