With repetitive consistency, lowly Windgap travelled to Clara with hope in their hearts, a strong resolve to give of their best, and a determination in their collective trust in each other that whatever they had in their armoury would be fired for the common good of the little village in the South junior A hurling league tie, writes Barrie Henriques.
In succeeding beyond their wildest expectation, they showed what absolute trust in each other, combined with their own special brand of courage can accomplish. Clara were beaten by 1-7 to 0-5.
On paper Clara, no respecter of reputation or acclaim, would have been quietly confident of a positive result. Their team was well emulsioned with the names of good hurlers, and with due respect to Windgap, Clara would be better posted in the realms of being better hurlers, or at the very least having more better players.
But am I doing justice to the stout-hearted Windgap lads? Maybe not!
Having the assistance of the Arctic wind, Windgap shot a first half total of 1-5, practically their entire game score. They were assisted by the sloppy concession of a goal in the 13th minute when a monster free from Ger Purcell dropped into the Clara square. Quite inexplicably the ball slipped over the goal line. At no stage did the home side look comfortable.
At the break a single goal separated the sides, Windgap 1-5, Clara 0-5. Clara would have been more than hopeful.
Doughty Windgap dug deep into their treasure chest of courage and determination.
Philly Lonergan hurled up a storm around the middle third of the field. His full-back line of Shane Walsh, Peter Landy and William Phelan never gave an inch. Matty Enright, James Murray and Pauric Hennessy dropped deep to defend the battlements, with the result that Clara just could not make any purchase with their many attacks.
Windgap were not for yielding.
Clara could only muster two second-half points from Cillian Phelan, and his superb midfield colleague, Peter Nolan. Clara had fine hurlers in Dermot Nolan, Tom Langton, Pat Galvan, Peter Nolan, and particularly Cillian Phelan.
It was a day for cussed determination and unconditional pride.
Scorers: Windgap - Cian Ryan (0-3, frees); Ger Purcell (1-0, free); James Murray (0-2); Phil Lonergan, Conor Lonergan (0-1 each). Clara - Cillian Phelan (0-3, frees); Peter Nolan (0-1 free); Declan Rafter (0-1).
Windgap - Michael Power, Shane Walsh, Peter Landy, William Phelan, Conor Lonergan, Ger Purcell, Sean Foley, Phil Lonergan, Cian Ryan, Adrian Landy, Matt Enright, Daniel cassin, Pauric Walsh, James Murray, Peter Hennessy. Sub - Kieran Power.
Clara - Noel Kehoe, Brian Delaney, Dermot Nolan, Tom Langton, Pat Galvan, David Prendergast, Shane Cassin, Peter Nolan, Bill Carrigan, David Carroll, Cillian Phelan, Conor Phelan, Eoin Curtis, David Mulrooney, Declan Rafter. Sub - Jason Byrne.
Referee - Ollie O’Neill (Barrow Rangers).
Lisdowney finish well to claim win
This was a real good contest in the South junior A hurling league between two outfits that felt the need to win, and went about realising their ambitions from the gun.
Lisdowney got first run, and three points without reply from Rory Hickey, Peter Bergin and the excellent Aaron Fogarty settled them. But the home side didn’t flinch, and four unanswered points by Lee Kinsella (one free), Seamus Kavanagh and a long-range Bernard Kavanagh free saw the home side rescue the advantage with six minutes remaining in the first half.
However, the impressive Rory Hickey latched on to a breaking ball close to the Graig goal, and his bullet of a ground stroke left Ronan Dowling helpless in the Graig goal. Before the break a point by Lee Kinsella left the minimum between the sides after a tough, hard fought first moiety, Lisdowney 1-3, Graignamanagh 0-5.
The first half format was again in evidence during the second thirty minutes.
Fogarty with a 65 stretched the Lisdowney advantage, but Eddie Walsh and a James Meaney free tied it all up at level pegging by the 36th minute. Again points by Fogarty (free) and Kieran Mackey shot the winners to the fore, but Eddie Walsh again narrowed the deficit to a single point by the 40th minute.
Shooting on both sides left much to be desired. Free takers on both sides were particularly wasteful. Graig were particularly guilty in that regard, and it would ultimately cost them dearly.
A Fogarty free eased the pressure on the winners as the game slipped into the closing 10 minutes. Lee Kinsella brought it back to a one-point game with free in the 51st minute. That was the last effort of the home side as Lisdowney, with a renewed surge of vigour slipped over five unanswered points to earn them the jewels of victory.
Lisdowney had terrific players in the stylish Aaron Fogarty, Pat O’Carroll and Kevin Sweeney, Sean Phelan and Peter Bergin.
Jim O’Donnell, the excellent Brendan Foley, Bernard Hennessy, James Meaney, Lee Kinsella, and Eddie Walsh had astonishingly productive games for the gallant losers.
Scorers: Lisdowney - Rory Hickey (1-3); Aaron Fogarty (0-5, two frees, ’65); Peter Bergin, Kieran Mackey, Pat O’Carroll, Joe Bergin (0-1 each). Graignamanagh - Lee Kinsella (0-4, two frees); Eddie Walsh (0-2); Seamus Kavanagh (0-1); Bernard Hennessy, James Meaney (0-1 each, frees).
Lisdowney - Niall Grogan, Niall O’Hara, Martin Phelan, Anthony O’Hara, Paddy Kenny, Sean Phelan, Peter Bergin, Pat O’Carroll, Kevin Sweeney, Eoin Delahunty, Aaron Fogarty, Rory Hickey, Kieran Mackey, Eddie Hickey, Michael Kenny. Subs - Joe Bergin, Niall Mackey.
Graignamanagh - Ronan Dowling, Diarmuid O’Neill, James Cahill, Jim O’Donnell, James Doyle, Brendan Foley, Bernard Hennessy, Eddie Dowling, James Meaney, Aidan Kennedy, Lee Kinsella, Michael Bolger, Tom O’Donnell, Eddie Walsh, Seamus Kavanagh. Subs - Jim McGrath.
Referee - Raymond Byrne.
Dollard goal gave ’Boro belief
It needed a goal by busy full-forward, Brian Dollard half way through the first half to inject a realisation into Dicksboro that they could overcome the challenge of Mullinavat more comfortably than appeared to them, even though they, the home side, were playing with the assistance of a bitingly strong wind in this junior hurling A league tie.
Dollard’s goal, one of two, was slammed home in the 15th minute. Up to that stage the less talented Mullinavat, who reported to Palmerstown with the minimum number of players, were standing upsides with any threat the ’Boro were putting on the table. Dicksboro could manage but four points inside the opening 15 minutes, and then Dollard netted a major.
However, the ’Vat men had cancelled the value of the goal within 60 seconds, when a long delivery from sixty yards on the sideline by Michael Jones was touched to the net by the alert Conor Frisby. With five minutes remaining Dollard again got inside the Mullinavat rearguard to slip home a left-handed rasper to afford them a lead of 1-3, a lead that was again decimated when another long Michael Jones delivery was allowed to slip over the goal line as it dropped into the parallelogram.
At half time, Dicksboro led by 2-8 to 2-2. The small home support were not happy campers.
Within four minutes of the restart Eoin Fennelly increased the home side’s lead with a dazzler of a goal. Suddenly the gradient on the hill facing Mullinavat looked daunting. With the breeze, they managed a mere seven points, but the ’Boro added 3-3 to their first half tally.
Therein lies the truth of the story.
Both half back lines were forceful and intimidating. The ’Boro found it difficult to overcome the doggedness of Ger Anthony at centre-back, with his wing- men, Robbie Malone and Darren Kenneally equally tenacious. At the other end the ’Boro trio of half backs, Jesse Watters, Kevin Nolan and Michael Rafter were no less courageous, and hugely obvious.
Enda O’Donoghue was accurate from placed balls, given the prevalent wind. Mason Clifford gave a confident display of controlled hurling, with some impressive co-ordination with ball and eye. Eoin Fennelly - when he got his range reading in order - James Murphy and Tom Manning worked extremely hard. Dollard was a real thorn in the side for Mullinavat.
Nicky Anthony did some great work in goal for the Vat, and certainly could not be blamed for any of the goals scored. Brian Phelan and Brian Kenneally tried hard at midfield, while Joey Gahan, and Pat Mulhearn could not have given any more.
Scorers: Dicksboro - Brian Dollard (2-2); James Murphy (2-1); Eoin Fennelly (1-0); Mason Clifford (0-3); Enda O’Donoghue (0-3, frees); Craig Cahill (0-1); Michael Rafter (0-1, free). Mullinavat - Michael Jones (1-4, 1-2 frees); Conor Frisby (1-0); Ger Anthony (0-3, one free, two ’65); Joey Gahan (0-1); Pat Mulhearn (0-1, free).
Dicksboro - Cillian Breathneach, Conor Maharaj, Michael Hayes, David Carroll, Jesse Watters, Kevin Nolan, Michael Rafter, Enda O’Donoghue, Phil Hogan, Mason Clifford, Tom Manning, Eoin Fennelly, Craig Cahill, Brian Dollard, James Murphy. Subs - Dairmuid Molloy, Shane O’Brien, James Gittins, Ger O’Donoghue.
Mullinavat - Nicky Anthony, Brian Bland, Richie Raftice, Shane Frisby, Robbie Malone, Ger Anthony, Darren Kenneally, Brian Phelan, Brian Kenneally, Joey Gahan, Pat Mulhearn, Michael Jones, Conor Frisby, Mossy Murphy, Paul Culleton.
Referee - John Guinan (St Lachtain’s).
Late goal underlined real story
A GOAL directly from a 65 on the call of full time only served to gloss over the truth that the travelling Southerners were out-fought, out-manoeuvred, out-witted and simply out-hurled by a well prepared, well focussed St Martin’s outfit in this junior A hurling league tie played in awful cold in Muckalee on Sunday.
It might be claimed that the icy conditions might have been more familiar to th e men in the North, but that would be to do a serious injustice to the determination and dedication of an impressive side who, taking the wind on their backs in the first half, gave a display of controlled, well coached, no-nonsense hurling.
Piltown opened the scoring with two fine points from Robbie Culleton and Nollaig Brophy. They were to add a meagre point to that haul for the remainder of the half.
In the meantime, the Saints were to clatter 2-9 for the same time segment above and below David Burchill’s crossbar. It really was no contest, and if it had been a boxing match, the referee would have called a cessation long before the 60 odd minutes had elapsed.
Of course they tried hard, but Martin’s were a impediment not too often experienced down in the South.
This is a fine young, determined outfit and one would be astonished if they were not in the sights of some opponent later when the junior whips were cracking.
The Martin’s goals arrived within five minutes of each other. The first came from David Breen, a tidy hurler. A long free dropped inside the large square, and while defenders dithered, Breen pounced. Five minutes later the stylish Kevin Kelly grabbed a ball out on the wing, travelled, and then despatched an inch-perfect pass to Podge Haughney. His shot was a blur as it rifled by Burchill.
At half time, St Martin’s were in cruise mode, leading by 2-9 to 0-3.
Besides the two goals, Shane Kinsella turned everything to gold from a wide variety of frees from all angles. David Breen bagged a few more from play, while Donal Shore also registered. The second half was a facsimile of the first with the winners doing just enough to keep warm.
The game was finished as a contest at the break. There was no value left in it for St Martin’s
Scorers: St Martin’s - David Breen (1-4); Shane Kinsella (0-7, six frees); Podge Haughney (1-2); Kieran Kelly (0-2); Donal Shore (0-1). Piltown - Richie Phelan, Martin Power (1-0 each); James Norris (0-2 frees); Phil Kenny, Nollaig Brophy, Robbie Culleton (0-1 each).
St Martin’s - Jason Shore, Brian Cadogan, Brendan Maher, Adam Murphy, Pat Dowling,Noel Darcy, Michael Morrissey,Luke Maher, Shane Egan, Kieran Kelly, David Breen, Shane Kinsella, Conor Kinsella, Podge Haughney,Donal Shore. Subs - Tom Walsh, Jack Dowling, Eugene Maher, Brian Byrne.
Piltown - David Burchill, Donal Ryan, Pa Connolly, Michael Dwyer, Brendan Norris, Kevin Walsh, Tom Talbot, Phil Kenny, Martin Power, David Kinsella, Nollaig Brophy, Rob Culleton, Shane O’Shea, James Norris, Richard Phelan. Subs - Dan Norris, Ian Flynn, Adam Murphy, Andrew McCarthy.
Kilmacow play well to score good win
Kilmacow deservedly edged the issue in this first round clash in the Southern junior A hurling league on Saturday.
While the home side, last season’s junior B champions, looked throughout to have that little bit in hand, they were pushed all the way by the visitors. This meeting, consistently of a decent standard, swung to and fro over the hour and provided good entertainment.
The meeting came to the boil with six minutes left when full-forward Patrick Mullen grabbed a lengthy Eóin Doyle free and netted, equalizing for the Shamrocks at 1-11 apiece. The opposition had been dominant in the third quarter, running into a lead at 1-11 to 0-9 on 37 minutes after Shay Dempsey converted a free. The same man had goaled five minutes earlier.
Kilmacow were in the driving seat but Ballyhale, led by Doyle and Enda Fitzpatrick at midfield and Liam Grant at centre-forward, wrenched back the wheel. Following Mullen’s goal, Shane Gaule and Doyle exchanged frees, as exchanges heightened all over the field.
Both teams had chances before Dempsey proved the trump card, shooting a point and slotting another dead ball in the closing minutes for that two-point margin.
Unpredictably, it was Ballyhale Shamrocks who had come quickest out of the blocks. They were 0-4 to 0-0 ahead after six minutes, the scores halved between Patrick Mullen and the promising Rónan Corcoran.
Kilmacow, prompted by centre-forward Shane Gaule, surged back. A Shay Dempsey point in the 20th minute gave them a lead at 0-6 to 0-5.
They retained this margin at the break, 0-9 to 0-8, having negotiated close and intense bouts of play. The spectators might have felt the game was going to collapse as a contest when that five-point gap was established. Thankfully, the best of the evening was yet to come.
Shane Harney kept a sound goal for the winners. Ian Ahearne and Johnny Barron formed a solid defensive spine, with Andy Kearns the best defender on the field.
Midfielders Liam Kearns and Ryan McKenna got through a lot of valuable work. Up front, the flying Shay Dempsey, Shane Gaule and Seán Ivory were most prominent.
Eóin Knox was likewise a capable custodian. His defence hurled well as a unit, with youngsters Eugene Aylward and Dylan Doran commendably active.
Eóin Doyle and Enda Fitzpatrick contributed handsomely to a terrific battle at midfield. Most incisive in attack were Rónan Corcoran, Liam Grant and Patrick Mullen.
Scorers: Kilmacow - Shay Dempsey (1-7, three pointed frees); Shane Gaule (0-2, two frees); Sean Ivory (0-2); Liam Kearns, Ryan McKenna (0-1 each). Ballyhale Shamrocks - Patrick Mullen (1-7, thee pointed frees); Ronán Corcoran (0-3); Enda Fitzpatrick (0-10; Eoin Doyle (0-1, free).
Kilmacow - Shane Harney, Jack Maguire, Ian Ahearne, Ray Hennessy, Stephen O’Keeffe, Johnny Barron, Andy Kearns, Liam Kearns 0-1, Ryan McKenna 0-1, Dylan Cooke, Shane Gaule 0-3 (2f), Shay Dempsey 1-7 (0-3f), Bob Croke, Seán Ivory 0-2, Mark McGuinness.
Ballyhale Shamrocks - Eóin Knox, Eugene Aylward, Keith Nolan, Brian Butler, David Harrington, Gavin Butler, Dylan Doran, Eóin Doyle 0-1 (f), Enda Fitzpatrick 0-1, Brian Cody, Liam Grant (captain), Rónan Corcoran 0-3, Liam Elvidge, Patrick Mullen 1-7 (0-3f), Darren Mason. Subs - Tom O’Keeffe for Darren Mason (51m), Mark Phelan for Liam Elvidge (51m).
Referee - Raymond Byrne (Glenmore).
Clubs show their support for NCBI appeal
YOU might remember that some time in the fall of 2011 I made a special petition -I do not involve myself directly in petitions, other than Daffodil Day - but as I said at the time, I felt that this particular one deserved a very special call.
Being one of numerous volunteers who read the Kilkenny People from cover to cover every week, in order that it is taped and forwarded by the Kilkenny branch of the NCBI (National Council for the Blind in Ireland) to over 50 people in the county who have vision impairment, I felt that the Kilkenny GAA clubs would like to involve themselves in making a donation towards the NCBI to insure that the superb work continues.
I did point out at the time that because of cutbacks, and a visible depreciation in the output of production equipment, the NCBI were struggling to maintain, never mind improve their services.
The TALKING NEWSPAPER is such a valuable asset for people who for reasons are unable to read their local paper, or any paper for that matter.
Every month some 20 or so readers take time out to read the KP on a Wednesday evening in the NCBI offices on the Callan Road. Another volunteer records the sound, while yet another edits, and insures that they are all in perfect good audio condition.
Then the hard-working staff member, Breda Walsh, packages and posts the recordings to the fifty or so listeners out around the county.
It is a safe bet that someone on your parish is a service user.
The readings are recorded after work for most people on Wednesday evenings. If you feel that you could be of service in this regard, your reading talents could be greatly appreciated and utilised for the greater good of those less fortunate.
In point of fact, many of the volunteers would be known to many of you. Contributions from the clubs are so very welcome.
Administrator, Breda Dowling, was practically in tears when explaining the value of the contributions from the clubs and a couple of individuals.
“The €1500 collected is a big help, and on behalf of the people with challenging eye sight difficulties, I say go raibh mile maith agaibh go léir. You will never know what your generosity has made possible.”
Community Resource worker, Anne Marie Walsh was equally delighted and appreciative for the donation.
“Not everyone would know about the service, but I can vouch that so many people out there have such a dependency on the TALKING NEWSPAPER, that the joy they experience when it comes through their letterbox is unbridled. I certainly align myself with the sentiments already expressed by Breda,” she said.
The clubs in Kilkenny made their contribution with a willing heart.
Gracious thanks to Blacks and Whites, Clara, Windgap, John Lockes, Danesfort, Tullaroan, Dicksboro, Glenmore, Mooncoin, Carrigeen, Fenians, Cloneen, Ballyhale Shamrocks, James Stephens, Slieverue, St.Lactains, Carrickshock, Railyard, Conahy Shamrocks, Erins Own, Muckalee Football Club, St.Patricks (Ballyragget), O’Loughlin Gaels, Thomastown.
Donation were also received from Hillary Delahunty (Carrigeen), Liam Dewberry, Kilkenny South Board GAA and Country Style Foods (Grannagh).
Pictured below is Barry Henriques presenting the proceeds of collection to Breda Dowling (Administrator), as Community Resource worker, Anne Marie Walsh looks on.