A SINGLE point, albeit a very good one, scored during the closing 24 minutes proved enough to edge edgy Carrickshock through to victory in the second round of the senior hurling league at bright Nowlan Park.
That score was one of just three the Southerners registered during a messy, disappointing second half that produced fare that was well below that of an enterprising, slick even, and most engaging opening period during which both sides produce some lovely skill and scores.
Erin’s Own (Castlecomer) can consider themselves somewhat unlucky losers, having battled through the closing 21 minutes with 14-men after having a player sent off. They out-scored the opposition by 0-4 to 0-1 during that period, but ultimately they paid the price for a failure to put away additional chances.
“We were disappointed not to get a draw at least,” said Erin’s Own selector, Tom Brennan. “We should have put more scores on the ’board early on. At half-time we felt we should have been ahead instead of being behind for all the good hurling we played.
“It was one of those days, we could have won, drawn or whatever, but we didn’t. There are another two points up for grabs next weekend, so the challenge now is to try and recover and win those.”
Match fell asunder
The losers had Gordan Byrne red carded in the 39th minute following an off the ball incident that left Carrickshock’s Luke Gaule in a heap on the ground. The referee was slow and deliberate, and spoke to the umpires nearest the incident before flashing the card, and then a linesman before resume play with a throw-in.
The incident, which was out of character with the game generally and a player who was going well, was dealt with speedily, but for whatever reason, the match fell asunder subsequently. Things deteriorated from being a satisfying Saturday serving into a mundane heap of near pointless effort that left both teams somewhat dissatisfied at the finish.
A pity, because the opening period was well contested, there was a good flow to the action and dotted here and there were some scores to be admired.
Damien Fogarty, a powerhouse throughout for the losers, opened the scoring when converting a breeze assisted free from 65 metres into the country end goal. Michael Murphy and Martin Boran combined for the former to double the advantage before Robert Moran turned a lovely delivery from Robert Moran into a point.
Erin’s Own were flying, playing with skill, drive and focus.
John Power, who took over the free taking duties from his injured brother, Richie, opened Carrickshock’s account from a set play in the 10th minute. By the 15th they had levelled, via efforts from Jamie Power and Mark O’Dwyer, who received a quick and precise delivery from the already dominant John Dalton (0-3 each).
The teams went step-for-step from there until the 24th minute, which was reached with the scores standing at 0-6 each. Some of the points landed were smashing – a Niall Rohan effort which was created by a smart hand-pass from John Power; a Gordan Byrne point on the turn after a huge Erin’s Own puck-out broke kindly for him and a great John Power effort after he fielded a placed delivery from Shane Power.
The hurling was good, from both sides.
Two late points for Carrickshock from Jamie Power (free) and John Power, with an assist from sub John Butler, gave them the advantage at half-time – 0-8 to 0-6. Erin’s Own had room for regret – the wides count read 7 to 4 against them.
The latter Power extended the winners lead when he punished a foul on John Cahill near midfield shortly after the turn. When John Power converted a 65 won by John Butler, the Southerners looked set to turn the breeze advantage into a real benefit.
It wasn’t to be, however. The game fell apart after the dismissal that followed. Carrickshock went 19 minutes before they made the next and final deposit into their account in the 55th minute, a mighty point from an 85-metre free by John Dalton (0-11 to 0-9).
It was a score that was badly needed by the ’Shock at the time, and which proved the difference between the teams at the finish.
Erin’s Own missed two reasonable chances from frees subsequently before Martin Boran converted a placed ball in the 62nd minute. It was too little, too late for Erin’s Own, who had mighty performers in the Fogarty brothers, Damien and Conor, Peter O’Donovan, Robert Moran and Michael Murphy, in patches.
Tops for the winners were former county star, John Dalton, Luke Gaule, John Murphy, Niall Tennyson, John Cahill, Jamie and John Power.
All in all it wasn’t a bad result for the ’Shock, who were without All Stars, Richie Power and Michael Rice. Two games, two wins, is good going!
Carrickshock – Patrick Farrell, Luke Gaule, John Murphy, Richie Frisby, Niall Tennyson, John Dalton, Pat Tennyson, John Cahill, David Franks, Shane Power, Mark O’Dwyer, Jamie Power, Michael Rohan, John Tennyson, John Power, Stoneyford. Subs – John Butler for R. Frisby; Damien Walsh for M. O’Dwyer; William Hoyne for P. Tennyson.
Erin’s Own – Tom Brophy, Gerry Callinan, Conor Fogarty (capt), Peter O’Donovan, Pauric Keating, Damien Fogarty, Aidan Moran, Jimmy Byrne, Robert Moran, Michael Murphy, Peadar Boran, Eoin Mealey, Martin Boran, Michael Owens, Gordan Byrne. Subs – Dermot Wallace for Owens; Declan Dunne for E. Mealey; Eoin Brennan for Moran.
Referee – Gavin Quilty (Slieverue)