THE Galmoy under-14 team added the Roinn D hurling league title to the championship title already annexed when they defeated Cloneen/Railyard in Castlecomer on Sunday., winning by 3-15 to 2-6. This was the third meeting of these two sides during the season and they served up another excellent hour’s entertainment for the big crowd.
The first half exchanges were evenly contested with Galmoy just shading it by three points at the break. Oisin Phelan was Galmoy’s star player and he spelled trouble for the Cloneen defence every time he gained possession. Jack Delaney, team captain, played a tremendous game at full-back, fielding a succession of high balls, particularly in the first half.
Brandan Phelan was consistent all through and struck an awesome point in the 58th minute while midfielders Conor Grace and Conor Drennan weighed in with a creditable seven points between them.
Shane Dunne at centre-back for Cloneen was excellent, particularly in the first half when he did his utmost to inspire his side and also shot a long range point in the 11th minute. Full-back Michael Browne and Eoin Regan performed well all through while Kevin Brennan carried the biggest scoring threat up front.
Galmoy began well with early points from Oisin Phelan and Conor Grace, but Cloneen dominated play for a considerable stage thereafter thanks in the main to Shane Dunne. They had a real boost in the 8th minute when Ciaran Cooney’s shot from the left wing dipped into the Galmoy net.
Unfortunately for them, Jack Delaney repelled the majority of their early attacks in the following period and when Oisin Phelan was switched out to centre-forward he ran at the Cloneen defence with telling effect and picked off two hard won points.
In the 16th minute Dylan Grace won a 20 metre free. Brandan Phelan made the long journey up field worthwhile when he shot to the roof of the net. Cloneen/Railyard came back strongly and had a good point from Paul O’Neill in the 19th minute.
After having to work really hard to win possession, Dylan Grace pointed neatly for the boys in blue, followed by a good Sean Phelan point from the left wing. Just before the break Shane Dunne soloed up field for Cloneen/Railyard and won an important free which Kevin Brennan converted to leave Galmoy ahead by 1-6 to 1-3 at the interval.
Within a minute of the restart, Kevin Brennan shot a rasper to the Galmoy net and the teams were now on level terms. Oisin Phelan put Galmoy back in front and then won a free which Conor Drennan pointed. With two points between the sides, there now came the turning moments of the game.
Cloneen/Railyard’s full-forward Paul O’Neill won a penalty in the 38th minute. Kevin Brennan’s well struck shot came back off the crossbar but almost immediately Cloneen/Railyard won a second penalty. This time Brennan’s low shot was blocked and cleared downfield by Brandan Phelan, with Conor Drennan pointing a free 30 seconds later to put three points between the sides.
Those missed penalties proved influential as they took the wind out of the Cloneen/Railyard sails while at the same time providing the impetus for Galmoy to turn up the heat for the remaining 20 minutes. In the 44th minute Conor Kelly won a ball 60 metres from goal on the left wing and when the sliotar was worked forward, it resulted in Oisin Phelan slotting home to the corner of the net.
Cloneen/Railyard battled hard and Kevin Brennan pointed three good frees to leave it Galmoy 2-10, Cloneen/Railyard 2-6 at the three quarter stage. Having played a championship game a week earlier now stood to Galmoy as they proved fitter in the closing stages and they over ran their game opponents.
They struck over some impressive points and would have had a goal but for a tremendous save by Cloneen/Railyard goalkeeper, Cathal Barry from an overhead shot by Patrick Doyle. Galmoy did register that elusive third goal when Evan Morrissey set up Cathal Phelan who blasted home on the stroke of full time.
For the second week in succession Joe Pyke, on behalf of Kilkenny Bord Na nOg, presented a trophy to Galmoy’s winning captain, who was Jack Delaney on this occasion.
Galmoy - Billy Drennan, Ryan Murphy, Jack Delaney (capt), Ned Lavelle, Colm Smith, Brandan Phelan (1-1, 1-0free), Conor Kelly, Conor Grace (0-3, 0-1 free ), Conor Drennan (0-4, 0-3 frees), Patrick Doyle, Cathal Phelan (1-0), Sean Phelan (0-1), Dylan Grace (0-1), Oisin Phelan (1-5), Evan Morrissey.
Cloneen/Railyard - Cathal Barry, Thomas Brennan, Michael Browne, Eamonn Brennan, Tristan Mayo, Shane Dunne (0-1), Aidan Barry, Daniel Barcoe, Eoin Regan, Kevin Young, Kevin Brennan (1-4, 0-4 frees), Ciaran Cooney (1-0), Mark Purcell, Paul O’Neill (0-1), Michael Doyle. Sub - Conor Rowe for P. O’Neill (inj).
Referee - Podge Butler (O’Loughlin Gaels).