There was a distinct inevitability about the result of this All County junior hurling league game in Kilmacow on Saturday, and the closer it neared the final call, that perception became increasingly obvious.
A point by the in-form Shay Dempsey at the 60 minute mark looked likely to dispel the anticipated idea of a draw, but then the deadly Paul Cody (Rangers) never flinched from the challenge of levelling matters with a none-too-easy free in the 62nd minute. It ended level, 0-13 each writes Barrie Henriques.
Both sides were guilty of some poor shooting, but such a vagary didn’t detract from an enjoyable contest between two sets of committed protagonists. Kilmacow will look at stats that will tell them that they only managed to score a mere four points from open play.
Manager Brendan Fennelly will not be too happy with that return from some highly-skilled attackers. At half time, the Carlow Rangers led by four points, 0-9 to 0-5. The home side would have the advantages afforded by a blowing wind in the second moiety.
The Rangers were tough, committed and possessed a superior team ethic, particularly in their defence. It would take some to break them down. In this respect, the likes of William Hickey, James Hickey and Richie Kelly were not for bending as they orchestrated some very stoic defending with an obvious purpose of creating purpose from the back.
A super long-distance free by the very impressive Ian Aherne midway through the second narrowed the disparity between the sides to two points. Three very accurate frees from Dempsey afforded Kilmacow a single point advantage with six minutes remaining.
In a hectic final seven minutes, Paul Cody levelled matters with a difficult free. Dempsey again shot Kilmacow to the fore, but again Cody stepped up to the ockey to tie the game. And so it remained. A good contest, with creditable entertainment, and on balance a fair result.
In addition to those mentioned, Derek Byrne, Hugh Byrne and David Grennan caught the eye for the Rangers. Kilmacow had fine warriors in Dean Power, Tom Reddy, Sean Flynn, Paddy O’Keeffe, Ryan Mc Kenna and Dempsey.
Scorers: Kilmacow - Shay Dempsey (0-8, seven frees); John Hayes (0-3, one free); Ian Aherne (0-1 free); Paddy O’Keeffe (0-1). Mt Leinster Rangers - Paul Cody (0-6, frees); Hugh Byrne (0-2); Derek Byrne (0-1, free); David Grennan, Eoin Doyle, Jack Murphy, James Hickey (0-1 each).
Kilmacow - John Guidera, Ian Aherne, Tom Reddy, Dean Power, Robbie O’Keeffe, Ray Hennessy, Brian Fleming, Sean Flynn, Ryan McKenna, John Hayes, Peter Mullally, Josh Tobin, Richie McNamara, Paddy O’Keeffe, Shay Dempsey. Subs - Shane Gaule, Emmett Blanchfield.
Mount Leinster Rangers - Frank Foley, William Hickey, Garry Doyle, Garry Kelly, James Hickey, Brian Nolan, Richie Kelly, Paul Nolan, Derek Byrne, Jack Murphy, David Phelan, Paul Cody, Eoin Doyle, Hugh Byrne, David Grennan. Subs - Richie Cody, Dermot Byrne, Michael O’Grady.
Referee - D. Connolly (Mooncoin).
A draw that ’Eoin appeared to win
Confusion reigned in Myshall on Saturdy when John Lockes (Callan) and Naomh Eoin (Myshall) finished level according to the match official, but according to many others, the home side had shaded the game by a single point.
So dear reader we will make our observations as per the official declaration, and tell you about a well contested All County junior hurling league game that neither side deserved to lose, and both sides turned in a creditable shift in the hunt for the laurels.
Myshall were faster out of blocks, and had two fine points on the board, one from Benny Nolan and a 65 from county man, Shane Kavanagh before Matt Houlihan and Mark Shelly nullified their value with two points for Callan.
Simon Burke brought John Lockes to it’s first half scoring conclusion with three points between the 10th and 20th minutes. They did not score until the second half resumed. Myshall didn’t try the patience of the scoreboard keeper either in that first half, as they only managed to improve on their first two points by four, two from Shane Kavanagh, one from Tommy Nolan, followed by another from his brother, Benny.
At half time the score read, Naomh Eoin 0-6, John Lockes 0-5. There was a lot of hard work on the agenda for the second half.
Much of the game was contested inside the perams of the middle third of the field, with neither goalkeeper being tested too often. New John Lockes keeper, Brendan Grace looks like an adequate replace for the retired Paul Morrissey. He has a lot to live up to.
Brian Treacy in the Myshall goal had a reasonably quiet evening, although he was called on at least twice to show his capabilities, and he did so with fine confidence. By the 40th minute, the Callan lads had slipped ahead compliments of a Shane Bergin point, and a couple from Simon Burke.
However, Shane Kavanagh had matters on an even keel by the 43rd minute, and from there to the end it was even steven. Two points from J.P. Corcoran and Bill McCormack finished the John Lockes scoring, and points scored by Martin Clowery, Cillian McCabe, Tommy Nolan completed the Naomh Eoin take.
John Lockes are showing improvement, and that will please management. They would have been delighted with the performances of J.P. Corcoran, Eoin McGrath, Simon Burke, Mark Nolan, Paddy Kennedy and Eoghan Fahey. Myshall had excellent performers in Carlow county man Dwain Kavanagh Cillian McCabe, Tommy Nolan and Shane Kavanagh
Scorers: Naomh Eoin - Shane Kavanagh (0-5, three frees, one 65); Benny Nolan (0-2); Tommy Nolan, Martin Clowery, Cillian McCabe (0-1 each). John Lockes - Simon Burke (0-5, three frees); Matt Houlihan, Mark Shelly, JP.Corcoran, Shane Bergin (0-1 each); Bill McCormack (0-1, free).
John Lockes - Brendan Grace, Liam Kennedy, John O’Neill, Mark Nolan, Bill McCormack, Eoin McGrath, Eoghan Fahey, J.P. Corcoran, Paddy Kennedy, Jim Power, Matt Houlihan, Mark Shelly, Simon Burke, Ger Shelly. Sub - Niall Hennessy.
Naomh Eoin - Brian Treacy, Ronan Nolan, Dwain Kavanagh, Shane Cranny, James O’Hara, Eoin Nolan, Cillian McCabe, Tommy Nolan, John M. Nolan, Martin Doyle, Shane Kavanagh, Martin Clowery, Keith Hogan, Joe Waters, Barry Nolan. Sub - Eoghan O’Hara.
Referee - S. Gibbons (Gowran).#
Brennan goal vital for the ’Rangers
A GOAL midway through the first half of this tight All County junior hurling league game by corner-forward, Tom Brennan, was, on
reflection, the deciding score and even though the home side might have pulled the game back to parity with their strong finish, there can be no excuses offered by Griignamanagh for the defeat other than the fact that on balance the better team won.
It may be suggested that the visiting Barrow Rangers lads were fortunate on occasion, and that they had enjoyed a more rewarding rub of good fortune, but there is no criminality in being born lucky, and neither would one be expected to offer an apology for being so endowed from birth.
To underscore the issue, if a blistering shot by Eddie Walsh had gone under rather than take the distemper of the upside of the crossbar, the result may have been different. The shot didn’t go under - fact. That Walsh effort was posted within 150 seconds of Brennan’s effort.
While the aforementioned Walsh slipped the Graig men into a one point lead after 60 seconds with a point from a free, a martin Bambrick point in the second minute set the winners off on a scoring spree that Graig just could not arrest for a while. Bambrick added another, and his midfield partner added a brace before Brennan landed the only goal of the game.
Graignamanagh had remained quite barren from play or frees right up to the 17th minute when Eddie Walsh doubled his take with a nice point. After that points by Walsh, a long range free from James Meaney, and another free from Bernard Hennessy had the half time whistle blowing with the score standing at Barrow Rangers 1-6, Graignamanagh 0-5.
The leaders had enjoyed the assistance of the considerable breeze during the first half. If the home side thought that the climatic assistance would make a difference, they were well rocked when it was the Paulstown lads who came out of traps with the greater focus of purpose.
Two quick points by Ciarán Doyle increased the Rangers advantage after just eight minutes of the new half. Two points each by Eddie Walsh and Lee Kinsella gave Graignamanagh hope of catching, but valuable contributions by Jason Holden, and Doyle, still held the four-point differential. Even two late points by James Meaney couldn’t be improved upon, and the Paulstown lads returned with the hoped-for couple of winning points.
Bambrick, Holden and Doyle were the stand out players for the winners, while Jim O’Donnell, James Cahill, James Doyle, and Eddie Walsh were good for Graig.
Scorers: Barrow Rangers - Tom Brennan (1-0); Martin Bambrick (0-3, one free); Jason Holden, Ciarán Doyle (0-3 each); Tom Whitely (0-1). Graignamanagh - Eddie Walsh (0-5, four frees); James Meaney (0-3, two frees); Lee Kinsella (0-2); Bernard Hennessy (0-1, free).
Barrow Rangers - Dean Holden, Kevin Brennan, John Kealy, Sean McDonald, Patrick Purcell, Tommy Brennan, Eddie Prendergast, Martin Bambrick, Jason Holden, Shane McEvoy, Ciarán Doyle, Tom Whitely, Ger Walsh, Cathal English, Tom Brennan. Sub - Diarmuid Maher.
Graignamanagh - Ronan Dowling, Diarmuid O’Neill, James Cahill, Jim O’Donnell, James Doyle, Brendan Foley, Bernard Hennessy, James Meaney, Eddie Dowling, Sean O’Brien, Lee Kinsella, Pauric Whelan, Adam Kennedy, Eddie Walsh, Seamus Kavanagh. Subs - Sean Dowling, Tom O’Donnell.
Referee - Ollie O’Neill (Barrow Rangers).
Honours even in Ballyhale
It was honours even in this South junior ‘A’ hurling league derby at cool but dry Páirc na Seamróg on Saturday. Ballyhale Shamrocks and Thomastown United each had clear chances to win in the final quarter.
That said, both clubs were probably happy enough to get a point on the board, the two of them having been beaten by Kilmacow in the previous round. The hosts started the brighter, two points to the good after ten minutes. The skilful Brian Cody and Eóin Doyle (free) had capitalized on considerable possession.
Thomastown enjoyed a purple patch during the next few minutes. Two Pádraig Caulfield points were divided by a James O’Hanrahan goal. The latter availed of a defensive lapse on 11 minutes and made no mistake from close range.
Although Doyle shortly slotted another dead ball, the opposition got on top in the middle third for a spell. They ran into a five-point lead in the 19th minute, 1-5 to 0-3, when the busy Jamie Lanigan rose a white flag.
The Shamrocks were facing a bit of a crisis. They settled down and reeled off four points on the spin, courtesy of Cody and three more from Doyle.
Johnny Barron replied three minutes before the break for a 1-6 to 0-7 advantage at half-time. Hard to call and anybody’s game. Exchanges tightened further on resumption and it was all square on 39 minutes, 0-10 to 1-7.
Then came a crucial moment. Thomastown broke through the defensive cover, sending Johnny Barron in on goal. He despatched a fine shot but Eóin Knox stood up well and managed a terrific save. Things tilted to and fro thereafter, with only four further scores.
A 53rd minute Pádraig Caulfield free gave his men a two-point gap at 1-9 to 0-10. Finishing well, Ballyhale battled back. A minute later, Eóin Doyle’s sweeping free from distance left the minimum in it. The next while was hectic, spills and thrills and misses.
Time ticking away, a minute left, Brian Cody spotted Dylan Doran and sent a clever crossfield ball. Doran fetched, took a few steps and struck.
The sliotar clipped the post and fell scoring side of it. Honours even at 0-12 to 1-9, and local honour satisfied.
For the home side, Eóin Knox kept a neat goal and made that vital save. Youthful corner-backs Eugene Aylward and Brian Butler offered a sound hour. Covering them, Gavin Butler and David Harrington got through a lot of important work.
The improving Dylan Doran and Eóin Doyle contributed consistently in midfield. Up front, Brian Cody, Rónan Corcoran and Donnchadh Fitzpatrick showed strongest. For the visitors, Darragh McGarry was typically assured between the posts. Colin Clarke and James
Hoyne provided a determined defensive spine. The speedy Gary Lehane and Neal O’Meara were a solid midfield pairing. On the evening, Pádraig
Caulfield was their most incisive attacker. He got best assistance from Jamie Lanigan and James O’Hanrahan.
Ballyhale Shamrocks - Eóin Knox, Eugene Aylward, Keith Nolan, Brian Butler, Gavin Butler, Kieran Grace, David Harrington, Dylan Doran (0-1), Eóin Doyle (0-7, five frees), Brian Cody (0-3), Enda Fitzpatrick (0-1), Rónan Corcoran, Liam Elvidge, Donnchadh Fitzpatrick (captain), Darren Mason. Subs - Mark Phelan for D. Mason 38th min.
Thomastown United - Darragh McGarry, Fergal Challoner (capt), Colin Clarke, Kieran Treacy, Eóin Treacy, James Hoyne, Kieran Sutton, Gary Lehane (0-1), Neal O’Meara, Pádraig Caulfield (0-6, four frees), Jamie Lanigan (0-1), Paul Barron, Johnny Barron (0-1), James O’Hanrahan (1-0), John Fitzgerald. Subs - Bobby Joe Walsh for K. Sutton 53rd min.
Referee - Willie Kearney (Dunnamaggin).
Graig were on fire
This South junior ‘B’ hurling league contest in Graignamanagh on Sunday was a one-sided affair, and when the homeside slammed home two goals within seven minutes of the start, it looked a forlorn hope for the visiting Piltown, who harboured ambitions of a winning result, but certainly didn’t anticipate a defeat as pronounced as was evidenced on the scoreboard at the finish.
Pauric Whelan bagged the first goal after six minutes, and Dane Mangan followed suit within a minute. It looked like a stroll in the park for the Graig men, but Piltown showed sterling recovery and by the half time they were actually upsides with the winners, Graignamanagh 2-3, Piltown 0-9.
Within five minutes of the restart, Shane Kavanagh shot goal number three, and fifteen minutes afterwards, substitute, Patrick Dowling shot number four. Centreback, Sean O’Brien completed the goal rush with the fifth major two minutes from time.
The winners were somewhat flattered by the end result. However they played with great gusto and pride in the jersey, and they could make the point with justification that they could do no more than beat the team that was on the park with them.
They had good performers in Jim O’Donnell, Sean O’Brien, Pauric Whelan, Seamus Kavanagh and Jamie McGrath. For Piltown, Philly Kenny, Donal Ryan, David Norris, and Shane Kinsella were prominent.
Scorers: Graignamanagh - Pauric Whelan (1-3); Jamie McGrath (0-5, one free); Seamus Kavanagh (1-1); Sean O’Brien, Dane Mangan, Pat Dowling (1-0 each). Piltown - Philly Kenny (0-5, three frees); Dean Brophy, Shane Aherne (0-2 each); Eoin Walsh, David Norris (0-1 each).
A draw was a fair and decent outcome
IN THE words of the hurler on every ditch, and with a license to abuse the vernacular, this South junior hurling ‘B’ game between two depleted teams was a “right ould rattle”. Both sides were short for a wide variety of reasons, not least of which was the game in Thurles, or at least one was led to believe so.
The result was that dependable, former stars like Nicky Murphy (’Shock), and Derek Holden (Callan) were forced into service to make up the requisite numbers for official purposes. It was a low scoring game, but the entertainment value from many perspectives was excellent, if only for the
total dedication, and determination of all contestants involved.
The pride of one’s own place was worth fighting for, metaphorically speaking. The sides were very evenly balanced, and so it proved as the game reached the half time break with John Lockes in front by 0-5 to 0-3.
Points by Niall Hennessy and Martin O’Connell increased the John Lockes advantage to four points by the 40th minute, but a Dan O’Brien point , and a smashing Larry O’Shea goal levelled proceedings with fifteen minutes remaining. A Bill McCormack point shot the Lockes ahead, but it was cancelled by an Eamon Power point within two minutes.
Dan O’Brien shot Carrickshock ahead with a free , but Niall Hennessy brought it level with a John Lockes free. Hennessy forced the Callan men to the fore with another free in the 55 h minute, but again O’Brien had a match for that too in his bag.
It was only right that neither side should have been unrewarded for their gallant efforts. Carrickshock were well served by the evergreen Nicky Murphy, Gerry Fitzpatrick, Kieran Holden, Pauric barron, Dan O’Brien, and Larry O’Shea.
For John Lockes, Brendan Grace, Bill McCormack, David Phelan, Eoghan Fahey, Jim Power, Martin O’Connell, Niall Hennessy and James Macken, played well. A very young Sean Power lined out in an adult team for his first game. Son of the legendary John, he gave a very gutsy performance, and showed plenty of signs that the apple never falls too far from the tree.
Scorers: Carrickshock - Dan O’Brien (0-5, two frees); Larry O’Shea (1-0); James Dalton (0-1, 65); Eamon Power (0-1). John Lockes: Niall Hennessy (0-5, two frees); Bill McCormack (0-2, ‘65s); Martin O’Connell (0-3).
Carrickshock - Cleve Cuddihy, Garry Fitzpatrick, Kieran Holden, Nicky Murphy, Pauric Barron, Chris Price, Dylan Halligan, John Power (Lismatigue), James Dalton, Aaron Roche, Darren O’Dwyer, Tommy Hearne, Dan O’Brien, Larry O’Shea, Pauric O’Dowd. Kevin Farrell, Eamonn Power.
John Lockes - Derek Holden, David Phelan, Brendan Grace, Liam Kennedy, Eoghan Fahey, Bill McCormack, Mark Nolan, Jim Power, Sean Power, James Macken, Niall Hennessy, Martin O’Connell, Paddy Holden, Noel Dawson, J.J Corrigan.
Wind defies Power and the ’Shock
This interesting encounter in the South junior hurling ‘A’ league in Brownstown on Saturday was in doubt to the conclusion.
The wind was a factor, and it might be argued, with some conviction that it denied Carrickshock the win that seemed attainable when John Power stepped up to a rather (in normal conditions) easy free in the dying embers to shift his side into a lead which could not have been redressed, given the time constraints.
The Carrickshock sharpshooter, Power and Tullogher’s Brendan Lawlor went hip to hip in the scoring charts all through the game. The evergreen Simon Kennedy, operating at corner forward for the home side, proved more than a handful for a variety of Carrickshock markers.
He bagged a terrific 1-4 from direct play, a fine addendum to one’s CV. His two goals helped his side to a half time lead of 2-8 to
the ‘Shock’s 0-7.
Carrickshock tore into the home side with a renewed vigour. Niall Rohan flashed a superb shot to the Tullogher net shortly after the resumption, but Tullogher never flagged in their determination to keep what they had earned. Billy Ryan, and Lawlor were able assistants to Kennedy. Lawlor’s last free for Tullogher in the 48th minute was to be Tullogher’s last success.
It was a backs to the wall struggle from there to the finish. Carrickshock came in swarms to cut down the Tullogher advantage, with Power leading from the front.
He snatched the draw as full time beckoned, and then in added time he got a chance to grab the lot. The swirling wind proved an obdurate foe, taking what looked like the winner just outside the post.
A fair result would be the majority opinion.
Scorers: Tullogher-Rosbercon - Simon Kennedy (2-4); Brendan Lawlor (0-5, four frees); Kevin Hennessy, Billy Ryan (0-1 each). Carrickshock - John Power (Lismatigue) (0-9, seven frees); Niall Rohan (1-2); Paddy Mulcahy, Eamon Foley (0-1 each); Kevin Farrell (0-1, free).
Tullogher-Rosbercon - Eoin Ryan, James Murphy, Bob Forristal, Joe Ryan, Anthony Cotterell, Kieran Barron, John Murphy, Brendan Lawlor, Billy Ryan, Kevin Hennessy, James Ryan, Donnacha O Connor, Simon Kennedy, Richard Ryan, Billy Ryan.
Carrickshock - Stephen Farrell, Seamus Millea, Kieran Holden, Paddy Mulcahy, Darren O Dwyer, Pat Dalton, Eamon Power, James Grace, Sean Gibbons, John Power, Eamon Foley, Kevin Farrell, Niall Rohan, Darragh Brennan.
Referee - John Minogue (Thomastown).