LISDOWNEY ended Barrow Rangers’ interests in this year’s under-16 hurling championship after a close and exciting Shield quarter-final.
Rangers got away to a dream start in Lisdowney when a fine movement was finished to the net by Dylan O’Shea. The hosts replied with two pointed frees from Michael Kenny, but minor scores from O’Shea and Brian Kelly put Rangers a goal ahead again.
Lively corner-forward Dylan Jordan was proving a handful for the Rangers defence and made a score for Jack Dunphy. He then added another point himself to reduce the deficit to the minimum.
It took a superb save from goalkeeper Kevin Hennessy to prevent the home side from going ahead. That stop spurred Rangers on, as two pointed frees from O’Shea and Ciaran Breen helped Paulstown take a 1-4 to 0-4 lead in at the break.
Lisdowney started the new half with Eoin Walsh sited at full-back, a move which would have a big impact in the game. With their new full-back in control the hosts dominated the early stages of this half but it took them all of 20 minutes to reach parity, through pointed frees from Walsh and Kenny (2) - this was due in no small way to the stubbornness of Rangers defence and some wild shooting. Paul Coss (L) and Dylan O’Shea then exchanged points, as the sides battled on to gain the upper hand.
Lisdowney sharpened up in attack, with Michael Kenny finding his range from play. He put over two points in quick succession, in addition to a pointed 65 from Walsh, as the hosts made a dash for victory. Rangers dropped a couple of frees into the square when going for a point might have been a better option, chances which were duly mopped up and cleared by Eoin Walsh.
Rangers weren’t out of it yet, however, and had a chance to get back in the game when they were awarded a penalty in the 58th minute. Ciaran Breen went for goal, but his attempt for the top left hand corner went just outside the upright - with it went Rangers chance of victory. Michael and William Kenny added two further points as Lisdowney pushed on for a deserved win.
Best for Lisdowney were Brian O’Carroll, Eoin Walsh, Conor O’Carroll, Michael Kenny, Jack Dunphy and Dylan Jordan. For Rangers none tried harder than Kevin Hennessy, Graham English, Ciaran Breen, Keith Flavin, Sean Murphy and Dylan O’Shea.
Lisdowney - Liam Dunphy, Edward Connery, Paul Coss (0-1), Dean McCann, Brian O’Carroll, Eoin Walsh (0-2), Ciaran O’Carroll, Kieran Skehan, Conor O’Carroll, Michael Kenny (0-7), Jack Dunphy (0-1), William Kenny (0-1), Niall Buckley, Alan Murphy, Dylan Jordan (0-1). Subs: Brian Kavanagh, Daniel Phelan.
Barrow Rangers - Kevin Hennessy, Richard Heffernan, Graham English, Conor Brennan, Adam O’Neill, Ciaran Breen (0-1), James Hogan, Sean Murphy, Keith Flavin, Evan Foley, Brian Kelly (0-1), Mark Drennan, Dara O’Connor, Dylan O’Shea (1-3), Dylan O’Neill.
Referee - Pat Hayes (Graigue-Ballycallan).