Carnew do enough
CARNEW EMMETS 3-9 KILCOOLE 1-11
CARNEW and Kilcoole played their Intermediate hurling championship tie at Pearse’s Park, Arklow, on Friday evening last.
The final scoreline would suggest a normal enough game of hurling with Carnew Emmets running out victors by four points.
However, squeezed in between the first whistle and the final whistle was an extraordinary game of hurling.
On an ideal pitch and in ideal weather conditions for hurling we were treated to the classic game of two halves.
Carnew Emmets began the game in confident mood. Their first touch and control was far superior to the Goosebank men in this first period.
They switched play with confidence and shot scores regularly as the opportunities arose.
TJ Hennessy, Brendan McCrea, Jody Byrne and Hennessy again from a free had the Wexford-border men four points ahead with five minutes gone.
Kilcoole were struggling and badly missed the influence of their talisman, county hurler Ronan Keddy. Midfielder Peter O’Brien opened their account with a point from play and when Luke Evans added a second on ten minutes it appeared that Kilcoole were weathering the storm.
TJ Hennessey responded with a fifth Carnew point but back came centre-back Toby O’Brien with a long-range score for Kilcoole.
O’Brien had a steady game all through and put up stout resistance in the first half.
Carnew got motoring again and added two points from Brendan McCrea and a TJ Hennessy pointed free.
Twenty minutes had gone when the Emmets netted their first goal.
A long clearance from the Carnew defence carried over the half backs in to the advancing TJ Hennessy who had time and space to turn and rifle a shot past Oisin Curry between the Kilcoole posts.
Two minutes later disaster struck for Kilcoole when a longrange free taken by Carnew goalkeeper Joe Murphy dropped down straight out of the blinding evening sun, was lost by everybody and deflected to the net.
Luke Evans came back for a Kilcoole point but Carnew had not finished the half yet.
Jody Byrne lashed home goal number three and a TJ Hennessy pointed free left the half-time score at 3-8 to 0-4 in favour of the Emmets.
It seemed that the game was effectively over and that there was little chance of Kilcoole getting back.
However, we were not to know that Carnew - to use cricket terminology - had “declared” and would only score one point in the entire second half.
When play resumed there was little yet to indicate a Lazarus type resurrection by Kilcoole.
Their opponents may have been lulled into a complacent attitude but Kilcoole were not setting the world afire either.
As the game neared the fifteen minute mark in this second period, Kilcoole had only pulled back two points.
Eoin Keddy pointed after five minutes and Luke Evans converted a long-range free in the twelfth minute.
TJ Hennessy struck a post with practically the only scoring chance that Carnew had since half-time.
Kilcoole got a similar break with a long-range free that Carnew had received in the first half.
Lee Evans dropped a free into the same goalmouth and the ball ended up in the net with substitute Ciaran Doyle maybe getting a touch.
Fifteen minutes gone and the score now stood at 3-8 to 1-6.
Carnew were getting alarmed and needed to get going again.
However, they were having difficulty restarting the motors and the momentum had swung in favour of Kilcoole, who were now winning a lot of the breaks in the middle.
Luke Evans had stepped up to the plate and reduced the gap to two goals with two pointed longrange frees.
Eoin Keddy, another Evans pointed free, and a great score from Lee Dutton brought Kilcoole within a goal of their rivals with two minutes left on the clock.
However, Jody Byrne lifted the siege for Carnew with a pointed free in the final minute of normal time and the blue and gold brigade could breathe easier in the minute or so of time added on. The final score was 3-9 to 1-11 in favour of Carnew.
Scorers – Carnew: TJ Hennessy 1-4, Jody Byrne 1-3, Joe Murphy 1-0, Brendan McCrea 0-2.
Kilcoole: Luke Evans 0-6, Ciaran Doyle 1-0, Eoin Keddy 0-2, Peter O’Brien, Toby O’Brien, Luke Dutton 0-1 each.
Carnew’s John Kavanagh and Kilcoole’s Toby O’Brien challenge for the sliotar.