GALMOY made hard work of collecting the points in this County Junior Hurling League clash at Clogh on Saturday.
Cloneen were in the game up until the final whistle and will have been disappointed not to have won. Their team that lined out bore little resemblance to that on the match programme and that may have had an unsettling effect.
Galmoy hit 12 wides over the hour, and while this may be fatal on another occasion, it at least gives them fuel for their next training sessions.
The performance of Graham Lawlor at midfield for the home side was immense. He dominated throughout as well as hitting some top class frees. His midfield partner, Patrick Brennan helped to give them a good advantage in this department.
Gary Delaney on goal delivered huge puck-outs, particularly in the first half when aided by the breeze. For Galmoy, Phil Russell was the scorer in chief.
Russell opened the scoring with a first minute pointed free. The next five points all came from Cloneen. Graham Lawlor pointed twice, one free, before young Michael James Feehan put over a nice point. Gary Delaney came out to his own 65 metre line and pointed a huge free before Braonáin Buggy pointed to leave the score 0-5 to 0-1 at the end of the quarter.
In fairness, both Cloneen corner-forwards, Feehan and Buggy, gave their respective markers plenty to think about and could have increased their effect on the scoreboard. Galmoy had to move Martin Phelan to midfield in a bid to curb Lawlor,with James Dunne slotting in at centre-forward.
Phil Russell arrested the slide in the 16th minute but his opposite number, Paul Donnelly, cancelled that score out at the other end.
Thomas Phelan became Galmoy’s only other scorer of the half with a 24th minute point. Braonáin Buggy replied with his second one. As the game approached half-time Cloneen seemed to have a comfortabl advantage.
In the 29th minute a Galmoy delivery to Joe Dollard saw him put a ground shot across the goalmouth. The ball was gathered by Phil Russell. His first shot was expertly saved by Gary Delaney, but Russell slapped home the rebound.
That goal left Galmoy trailing at the break by 1-3 to 0-7. If the truth be told, they had squandered an abundance of scores with wayward shooting while Cloneen had made good use of the strong breeze.
The expectation was that Galmoy would push on after the break. They set about the task in earnest. Noel Doherty won four second half frees which were all converted by Russell, who also won a couple of frees.
Cloneen failed to score from play during that second half. Indeed, Galmoy goalkeeper, Liam Drennan was not called into action once.
Galmoy introduced three second half substitutes and they all won useful possession up front. Graham Lawlor continued to carry the flag for the home side. He converted four second half frees along with a 65.
Thanks to Lawlor there was just one point between the sides after 56 minutes, 1-9 to 0-11. Phil Russell had moved out to the midfield area and he made a few very worthwhile clearances as well as landing a monster of a point.
The visitors finally got their shooting in order. Noel Doherty hit two late points to scrape a victory. Niall Doherty and Jason Stanley did well in defence for the winners.
The teams will renew acquaintances in the first round of the Northern junior championship in Ballyragget in July.
Galmoy - Liam Drennan, Jason Stanley, Brendan Phelan,Michael Harte, Eamon Corcoran, Niall Doherty, Michael Brennan, James Dunne (0-1), John Phelan, Thomas Phelan (0-1) Martin Phelan, Noel Doherty (0-2), Thomas Corcoran, Phil Russell (1-9, 0-5frees), Joe Dollard. Subs - Donncha Gray for T. Corcoran; Gavin Doherty for J. Dollard; Phil Brennan for J. Phelan.
Cloneen - Gary Delaney (0-1, free), Paul Kelly, Ger Campion, Niall Mooney, Gavin O’Dowd, Philip Roche, Fergal Brennan, Graham Lawlor (0-7, five frees, one 65), Patrick Brennan, Gavin Mansfield, Caleb Roche, Ronan Walsh, M.J. Feehan (0-1), Paul Donnelly, Braonán Buggy (0-2). Sub - Dean Shortall for G. Mansfield.
Referee - John Guinan (St Lachtain’s).