Late burst seals the title for Cloughduv.
Cloughduv 1-22 Kilmichael 1-13
CLOUGHDUV have been crowned Muskerry JAHC winners for the third time in four seasons following victory over Kilmichael in the decider at Macroom last night.
Huge credit must go to Kilmichael, ranked massive underdogs going into the contest, they gave it everything.
It was a scoring burst from the winners in the last quarter that put gloss on the performance. Dónal Corkery was excellent in midfield for Cloughduv and was named Man of the Match after the game. Five of the Cloughduv forwards chipped in with scores, while the subs made the desired impact.
Kilmichael started the tie full of aggression and passion, and led after four minutes 0-2 to 0-1. Kilmichael’s Peter Kelleher, who drove on his team superbly with two points.
Heavy showers before throw in resulted in slippery underfoot conditions and a greasy ball, but slowly but surely, Cloughduv adjusted to the conditions. The winners scored four of the next five points. The accurate Mark Verling with three frees, while the pacey Mark Walsh also slotted over an effort, 0-5 to 0-3, after the first quarter.
Cloughduv were in control at this juncture and looked to have the measure of their opposition. The winners led on by Mark Verling raised four of the final six points of the half. Peter Kelleher was tormenting the Cloughduv defence with his powerful runs and was fouled twice, which he duly converted, 0-9 to 0-5 at the break.
Cloughduv remained in the driving seat on the resumption, with two quick points through Mark Walsh and Eoghan Clifford. Kilmichael were in no mood to buckle and led on by two great warriors in defence, John O’Mahony and John O’Riordan, they started creating chances. Peter Kelleher scored a free, and Shane Masters, unusually kicking the sliotar over the bar from close range, despite a number of defenders around him.
A Kilmichael goal would have made the proceedings very interesting, but after Mark Verling converted another placed ball, the winners netted a goal. A long ball sent into the Kilmichael box wasn’t cleared, and captain Brian Ahern was on hand, to drill the ball into the net. 1-12 to 0-7 after 38 minutes.
Despite the blow, Kilmichael found a new lease of life. They scored four of the next six points to leave a glimmer of hope going into the last quarter, 1-14 to 0-11. The winners dipped into the bench, and the subs added pace and guile to the team.
Cloughduv opened up an unassailable lead approaching the final few minutes, 1-20 to 0-12. A weary Kilmichael side, had no match for the victors at this stage. Cloughduv’s 20th point, which was from Brian Verling would have been a goal, if it wasn’t for a super save from Kilmichael goalkeeper Stephen O’Leary to tip it over the bar. There was something for the defeated supporters to cheer about. They saw their team score 1-1 approaching injury time.
Peter Kelleher with the free, while sub Brendan Kelleher, was quickest to react in a packed penalty box, to tap the ball home. Ultimately, the final say belonged to the new champions, with the last two points. Also, Kilmichael net minder Stephen O’Leary was alert again, to somehow save Eoghan Clifford’s well-struck shot. The final whistle sounded soon after.
A mention must also go to referee Colm Ó Mochain, who managed the game efficiently.
Scorers for Cloughduv: M Verling 0-7 (0-4 f), B Ahern 1-1, K Walsh 0-3, K Walsh 0-3, E Clifford 0-2, S O’Connor 0-2, B Verling 0-2, L Long 0-1, K Barry-Murphy 0-1.
Kilmichael: P Kelleher 0-10 (0-7 f), B Kelleher 1-0, A Kelly 0-1, C Cotter 0-1, S Masters 0-1.
CLOUGHDUV: J Buckley, J Moynihan, J McCarthy, A Murphy, A Cronin, A Ahern, L Long, D Corkery, S Curzon, K Walsh, M Walsh, B Ahern (c), J Ryan, M Verling, E Clifford.
Subs: S O’Connor for J Ryan (47), L Kelleher for L Long (53), B Verling for K Walsh (55), K Barry-Murphy for S Curzon (56), P Buckley for M Walsh (59).
KILMICHAEL: S O’Leary, L Henningan, John O’Mahony, K O’Leary, S Foley, J O’Riordan, K Kelleher, B Cotter (c), C Cotter, A Kelly, P Kelleher, T Tobin, M Masters, S Prendeville, S Masters. Subs: J McCarthy for T Tobin (41), B Kelleher for S Masters (56), James O’Mahony for B Cotter (61 inj). Referee: Colm Ó Mochain (Cill na Martra)
Mark Walsh, Cloughduv, gets away from Simon Foley and Adrian Kelly, Kilmichael, in the JAHC final in Mid Cork last night.
Joe Ryan, Cloughduv, is challenged by Luke Hennigan, Brendan Cotter and John O’Mahony, Kilmichael, at Macroom last night.
Brian O’Donovan, MJK Oils, presents the Cup to Brian Ahern, Cloughduv captain, after the win against, Kilmichael, also included are John Feeney, Secretary Muskerry Gaa Board and Gerard Kelleher, MJK Oils.