A FITTER and slicker Lisdowney turned on the style in the second half and strode away from Galmoy in this Northern junior hurling championship first round clash at Freshford on Friday.
The sides were locked together after an even first 30 minutes at 1-6 each. However, the move of Eddie Hickey to centre-forward just before the break paid rich dividends in the first five minutes of the new half. Hickey pointed his side ahead immediately after the break when he fielded a huge clearance from his captain Martin Phelan.
A minute later the flying Hickey picked up a ball on the run and struck a ground skimming shot to the net. In the 37th minute Hickey goaled again and there was only going to be one result after that.
The game began well for the winners when they hit the opening four points in six minutes to open up a good lead. Three of those came from frees, converted by their two minor players, Michael Kenny and two from Kevin Sweeney.
Off the mark
The fourth was from the stick of centre-forward, Ciaran Mackey, courtesy of a Hickey pass. Galmoy got off the mark in the ninth minute when Stephen Murphy took a pass from John Phelan and pointed from fully 65 metres.
Murphy added another from the right hand sideline after taking a Phil Russell pass. Russell then struck a good point over his shoulder. Galmoy were back in contention, 0-4 to 0-3.
Kevin Sweeney and Stephen Murphy exchanged pointed frees as the first quarter ended. John Phelan and Michael Brennan were playing well on the Galmoy half back line while Pat O’Carroll at midfield and wing back Sean Phelan were doing the business for the winners. O’Carroll had to move to centre-back when Shane Clyne was forced to retire with an injury in the 26th minute.
Paddy Bowden was always dangerous up front for Lisdowney. In the 22nd minute he pointed after grabbing a Kevin Sweeney line ball. A minute later Galmoy captain, James Dunne made a probing run up the centre. Nigel Stanley then offered support and took a shot on goal.
The ball was fumbled by the Lisdowney ’keeper and Joe Dollard was on hand to force the sliotar over the line to put Galmoy ahead for the first time, 1-4 to 0-6.
Best period of game
After four wides they hit two further points from a Stephen Murphy free, won by Nigel Stanley, and then Thomas Phelan hit a decent point under pressure. This was Galmoy’s best period of the game. They lead by three with time just up.
A minute into injury time, however, Galmoy gave away a silly free at midfield. Michael Kenny’s shot from long range took a deflection off a Galmoy defender for a fortunate goal which tied up the game 1-6 each at the break.
Lisdowney could well have been ahead at this juncture as Liam Drennan had denied them on at least three occasions during the half.
Hickey’s purple patch turned the game afterwards. The dismissal of two Galmoy players in the third quarter compounded a miserable night for the losers.
Lisdowney’s fourth goal came from the hard working Paddy Bowden when he put a low shot into the corner of the net from the left hand side. Niall Doherty and James Dunne tried to revive the Galmoy challenge, but it was Lisdowney who picked off a few further points and marched on to meet Cloneen in the next round.
Martin and Sean Phelan, Kevin Sweeney and Eddie Hickey were always to the fore for the winners.
The referee had to play the whole game with no linesman at either side of the field. Surely the players deserve better than this in a championship game.
Lisdowney - Niall Grogan, Niall O’Hara, Martin Phelan (capt), Padraig Kenny, Raymond Fitzpatrick, Shane Clyne, Sean Phelan (0-1), Pat O’Carroll, Vincent Fitzpatrick, Joe Bergin, Ciaran Mackey (0-2), Michael Kenny (1-2,1-1frees), Kevin Sweeney (0-5, 0-4 frees), Eddie Hickey (2-1), Paddy Bowden (1-1). Subs - Laurence O’Carroll for S. Clyne (inj); Niall Kenny for J. Bergin; Aaron Fogarty for C. Mackey; Michael Bergin for R. Fitzpatrick.
Galmoy - Liam Drennan, Brian Doherty, Brendan Phelan, Eamonn Corcoran, John Phelan, Niall Doherty, Michael Brennan, Nigel Stanley, Martin Phelan, James Dunne, capt (0-1), Stephen Delaney, Thomas Phelan (0-1), Phil Russell (0-1), Stephen Murphy (0-5, 0-3frees), Joe Dollard(1-0). Sub - Donncha Gray for J. Dollard.
Referee - Peter Burke(Emeralds).