St MARTIN’S were always a step ahead of Galmoy/Windgap in this Roinn B minor hurling championship clash at Ballyragget on Monday.
The winners found scores much easier to come by when aided by the breeze in the first half. They led by 1-11 to 1-4 at half time. Afterwards they were always able to respond to a score from the opposition.
In Shane Kinsella at midfield they had the most industrious player on the field who did well on the frees, but more importantly, showed an appetite for hard work all through. Paddy Brennan and Adrian Farrell also got through an amount of work for the winners.
Frank Phelan did best for the combined forces, and also struck over seven frees. William Phelan was excellent at centre-back while Martin Duggan and Darragh Morrissey never gave up the chase.
Three points in as many minutes from Shane Kinsella gave St Martin’s an early cushion along with one each from Conor Dowling and Colm O’Neill. Martin’s lead by 0-8 to 0-3 until Galmoy/Windgap conjured up a goal in the 12th minute.
A long clearance from defence by Darragh O’Shea was well fielded by Cian Hynes. He turned his man, went on a mazy solo run and finished by striking a ground shot to the net.
In the 27th minute Martin’s responded. When James Callinan was fouled up front, goalkeeper Jason Shore made the long journey upfield well worthwhile when he sent the 20 metre free to the net. This gave his side a seven point interval advantage.
After James Callinan had pointed early for Martin’s, Frank Phelan put over a brace for Galmoy/Windgap, who earnestly tried to get back into contention. Their hopes were dealt a further blow in the 38th minute. A free by Shane Kinsella from 40 metres into the wind dropped short only for Conor Dowling to first time the sliotar low to the left corner.
No matter what Galmoy/Windgap did from here on, there was always faced a deficit of at least six points. Padraig and Niall Walsh tried hard and William Phelan later joined the forward division, but it was all in vain as Martins had laid a solid foundation for victory.
St Martin’s - Jason Shore (1-0, free), Loughlin Hogan, Alan Kelly, Paddy Heffernan, Jack Dowling (capt), Paddy Brennan (0-1), Adrian Farrell, Stephen Walsh, Shane Kinsella (0-10, seven frees), Shane Dowling, Robert Reid, James Callinan (0-1), Conor Dowling (1-2), Donal Shore (0-3), Colm O Neill (0-1). Sub - John Joe Kelly for R. Reid.
Galmoy/Windgap - Kevin Duggan, Patrick Moore, Darragh O’Shea, Michael Vaughan, Martin Duggan, William Phelan (capt), Darren Grace, Frank Phelan (0-10, seven frees), Peter Hennessy (0-2), Brendan Power, Daniel Cashin (0-1), Niall Walsh (0-1), Darragh Morrissey, Padraig Walsh, Cian Hynes (1-0).
Referee - Sean Cleere (O’Loughlin’s).