Leinster GAA Post Primary Junior “A” Hurling Final
St Kieran’s 1-23 Coláiste Mhuire 1-16
A dreary November day in UPMC Nowlan Park was lit up by some sublime individual displays as Coláiste Mhuire Johnstown and St Kieran’s College played out a thrilling Junior “A” Hurling Final. From the off the Johnstown men didn’t show any signs of nerves as they settled into their first Post Primary “A” Final with ease. This was thanks in no small part to a cracking effort from Jimmy Cleere who deftly controlled the ball before firing over from right on the sideline. This bright start continued as Callum Lawlor slotted over over his first placed ball of the day after a foul on Jason Kelly. St Kieran’s only had to wait until the 4th minute to get off the mark, Conor Doyle slotted his first free of the afternoon. The Windgap man didn’t have to wait long for his second after Ciallin Brennan was hauled back when through on goal.
After this things really stepped up a gear. Declan Teehan got himself off the mark after making a great run through the middle, while Lawlor showed his class with a sublime line ball from all of 40 yards out. Himself and Doyle then traded frees before Eoghan Cahill joined in on the action by firing over a fine score of his own. This announced Cahill’s arrival on the big day as the Ballycallan man turned provider to set up Noah Manogue with a point of his own. This was quickly followed by a first of the day for full forward Ciallin Brennan.
It was then time for the first goal mouth action of the afternoon when Coláiste Mhuire goalkeeper Ethan Lafferty was called into action to deny a fine effort from Ed McDermott. Another two quick fire frees following this from Lawlor ensured the current swing of momentum remained with the Johnstown side. Then the real spark of the day came. Johnstown full forward Justin Duggan seemed to be no threat at all when he picked up the ball on the Kieran’s 65 yard line. However, The Harps man had other ideas, he set off on what can only be described as a mesmerizing run before finishing a drop shot to the back of the net. Not only this but he quickly followed up with a long range point from just outside the halfway line.
Ciallin Brennan stepped up for Kieran’s to stop the rot notching his second of the afternoon. The city side kept up the pressure and it duly paid off when Eoghan Cahill fired home from close range to bring the sides back level at 1-09 a piece. This was followed up with an Ed McDermott free before Cahill slotted another to leave it 1-11 to 1-09 in favor of the town side.
The second half was barely a minute old when Eoin Delaney scored his first of the afternoon to leave only the bare minimum between them. This margin looked to be under threat when Conor Doyle latched onto a breaking ball and looked sure to bag Kieran’s second goal of the day, however the sharp shooter decided to take the safety of a point. Just two minutes later Justin Duggan set off on another run. This time the Harps man was coming in at the tightest of angles, it took a fine brave stop from Jake Mullen to deny Duggan his second major of the afternoon. The resulting clearance was picked up by Jayme Thornton and he duly got himself onto the score sheet. From here McDermott, Doyle and Lawlor for Johnstown would all slot over frees.
From this point on St Kieran’s began to assert their dominance. Johnstown went short with a couple of puck outs which ultimately led to scores for Noah Manogue and Sean Bergin with Ed McDermott adding another long range free to his tally. Duggan continued to be a thorn in St Kieran’s side and was dragged down when setting off on another of his trademark runs with Lawlor doing the needful from the resulting free.
The game looked to be slipping away from the Johnstown side when Conor Hoyne picked up in his own half and fired over after a barnstorming run through the heart of the Coláiste Mhuire defense. Their fate looked all but sealed when McDermott picked up a ball on the 21 and linked up with Bergin who found a wide open Ross O’Neill who looked destined to put the game to bed. However, a last ditch hook of the finest variety from wing forward Thornton meant there might be one more twist in this dramatic encounter. Sadly it wasn’t to be the case O’Neill didn’t let his missed opportunity get to him as he quickly fired over two points in quick succession to mean that Kieran’s once again are top of the pile.
Coláiste Mhuire can hold their heads high for a first appearance of this magnitude the acquitted themselves more than well. However, ultimately it was the strength of the bench that saw St Kieran’s over the line. The ability of Hoyne, O’Neill and and Luke Lawlor to make a real impact on the game was the glaring difference as the city side ensured their dominance of the Junior grade of hurling continues.
St Kieran’s : Jake Mullen, Ciaran Hickey, Conor Brophy, Jim Conlon, Sean Deely, David Barcoe, Evan Muprhy, Sean Bergin, Ed Lauhoff, Eoghan Cahill, Ed McDermott (C), Bill McDermott, Conor Doyle, Ciallin Brennan, Noah Manogue.
Subs: Luke Lawlor for Deely, Conor Hoyne for Murphy, Ross O’Neill for Brennan.
Coláiste Mhuire: Ethan Lafferty, Darragh O’Grady, Jerry Hednerson, Aaron O’Dwyer, Lorcan Bourke, Rory Garrett (C), Michal Ahern, Eoin Delaney, Oisin Degen, Jason Kelly, Declan Teehan, Jayme Thornton, Jimmy Cleere, Justin Duggan, Callum Lawlor.
Subs: Regan Downey for Cleere, Ross Deegan for Deegan.
St Kieran’s: Conor Doyle 0-06 (5 frees), Eoghan Cahill 1-02, Ed McDermott 0-05 (4 Frees), Ciallin Brennan, Bill McDermott, Noah Manogue, Ross O’Neill 0-02 each, Sean Bergin, Conor Hoyne 0-01 each.
Coláiste Mhuire: Callum Lawlor 0-09 (8 frees), Justin Duggan 1-01, Eoin Delaney 0-03, Declan Teehan, Jayme Thornton, Jimmy Cleere 0-01 each.