Andy stars as
at Joule Park, Aughrim ST PATRICK’S 2-10 KILTEGAN 1-07
THE big news before this Senior hurling championship clash was that Andy O’ Brien’s 12-week suspension following his red card against Glenealy had been overturned by the Wicklow GAA Hearings Committee on Friday evening, leaving him free to line out against Kiltegan the following day.
Somewhat ominously, O’Brien was heavily involved in the opening exchanges, a real focal point for his sides attack. However, the game opened with an Andy O’Brien free which came back off the post before being cleared, and the county star struck a further two wides before opening his account with a mid-range free.
While the imposing full-forward saw a lot of possession in the opening stages of the game, one would have been forgiven for wondering whether the late overturning of his suspension had affected his preparations for this clash.
These doubts would be laid to rest before the end of the half in emphatic fashion. The opening score of the game came on the back of a spurned opportunity from Kiltegan, and this would prove to be a regular theme in the first half.
With a shot dropping short for Kiltegan, St. Pat’s broke quickly and Christy Moorehouse found space on the left flank to open the scoring.
The sides exchanged scores before the first goal opportunity presented itself. The industrious Kevin Byrne chased down and won a loose ball on the right wing before making a beeline for goal under heavy pressure from his marker.
Just as Byrne had looked to create enough space for himself to pull the trigger play was called back for the fouls he had endured. From the close range free, Seanie Germaine wasn’t content to settle for a point but saw his attempt to raise a green flag saved for a 65 which the corner-forward duly converted.
Kevin Byrne’s rugged playing style reaped its rewards shortly afterwards when some good work off the ball resulted in him dispossessing Pat’s goalkeeper Eoghan O’Mahony who was left with little option but to haul Byrne down in order to stop a sure goal.
Up stepped Jeffrey Bermingham but his effort was tame and O’Mahony was more than capable of pulling off the save. This was a bitter blow for Kiltegan. Prior to the penalty miss, Kiltegan had another three efforts on goal saved and this lack of conviction in front of goal would prove costly when all was said and done.
One man with no lack of composure in front of goal was Andy O’Brien, the county star finding the net on two occasions in the first half.
His second goal in particular was an exceptional effort. Plucking a high, diagonal ball out of the sky at the edge of the square, O’Brien twisted and swung across his body in one quick movement, finding the corner of the net with the most clinical of finishes.
Kiltegan should have been much closer but they went in at the break seven points down.
In the second period, Kiltegan moved Padraig O’Toole into the full-forward line and this switch threatened to spark a comeback when O’Toole beat his man before shooting across goal into the net.
In the end, it was too little too late as St. Pat’s always did enough to maintain their lead.
Kiltegan will rue their penalty miss in the first half on top of their failure to convert several other goal opportunities.
St. Pat’s were clinical in attack and brave in defence, with Michael Connors in particular putting in some sensational blocks in the closing stages as Kiltegan pushed on desperately in search of a second goal.
Scorers – St Patrick’s: Andy O’ Brien 2-06(0-04f), Christy Moore- house 0-01, George O’ Brien 0-01, James O’ Brien 0-01, George O’ Connor 0-01.
Kiltegan: Padraig O’ Toole 1-00, Seanie Germaine 0-04(0-02f, 0-01 65), Kevin Byrne 0-01, Jeffrey Bermingham 0-01, Aaron Byrne 0-01.
St. Patrick’s: Eoghan O’Mahony; Tomas Kehoe, John Connors, George O’Brien; Michael Connors, Gerry Connors, Dale Quinn; George O’Brien, Eddie Kelly; Christy Moorehouse, Shane Doyle, John O’Brien; George O’Connor, Andy O’Brien, James O’Brien.
Kiltegan: Luke Byrne; Eoin O’Neill, Bryan Kearney, Colm O’Connor; Mikey Mangan, Ronan Byrne, Dan Kearney; Rory Finn, Padraig Byrne; Padraig O’Toole, Jeffrey Bermingham, Cathal Fitzgerald; Seanie Germaine, Kevin Byrne, Aaron Byrne. Subs: Ciaran Doyle, Christy O’Toole, John O’Keeffe, Mark Murphy, Stephen Coogan.
Referee: Jimmy Kelly COUNTY champions Bray Emmets took another step towards clinching one of the semi-finals berths in the Dacia Senior hurling Championship when they made the short trip to Greystones to face Avondale on Sunday morning last.
Following their only defeat so far, to arch rivals Glenealy, the three-in-a-row champions bounced back to defeat Kiltegan in the last round and on this occasion the north Wicklow side proved to strong for a weak Avondale side in what was an excellent performance despite being so many short players from last year’s winning side which must have pleased their new manager, Tipperary native Tommy Carroll and his selectors.
Bray Emmets entered the contest firm favourites while Emmet Suillvan’s side were aiming to collect their first points in what has being a disappointing campaign for the Rathdrum men.
The end result saw Bray Emmets go through the motions before emerging victorious with a 19-point winning margin.
Bray centre-half forward Padraig Doyle opened the scoring with a point from play after five minutes and the winners continued to keep the pressure on with Diarmuid Materson falling short with a 65 and Cian O’Byrne lashing the breaking ball side but the Bray attacker made up for that miss when he landed a point after seven minutes.
With the midfield pairing of Enda Forde and Diarmuid Materson controlling the middle third the men from the banks of the Dargle pushed further ahead with county players Padraig Doyle and top scorer Masterson adding a point each before Ray Nolan replied with a point from a free to leave Bray ahead by 0-04 to 0-01 at the end of the first quarter.
The winners continued to dominate in most sectors but were unable to break down a
Kiltegan’s Padraig O’Toole and St Pat’s George O’Brien compete for the ball during the SHC in Joule Park, Aughrim. Picture: Garry O’Neill