Offaly's Adam Screeney in action in the Under 20 All Ireland hurling final. See P.J. Cunningham’s report in the Sports Section. [Inpho/Tom Maher]

Zealous Clare take the spoils

Clare 1-20 Limerick 0-15

It was a weekend of hurling at Gaelic Park as the Big Apple footballers were off the schedule in anticipation of their upcoming game in the Tailteann Cup. It was also good to see the crowd back in the stand for the weekday games and the sizeable crowd certainly good value for their money with the clash between the Munster teams, Clare and Limerick. 

Clare had the edge as they appeared to be fitter, played with greater zeal and were very productive coming off transitions. The Banner Boys started strongly with three points courtesy of Daryl Gaughan, Donal Hunt and Morgan Carey. At the other end, Limerick were quite wasteful before Conor Higgins got their tally moving with a superb point. Then it was back to the Clare script with Morgan Carey and Oisin Flannery hitting over points, while Limerick continued their squander mania until Gearoid Kennedy got things straightened out with a fine point. 

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After the water break, Oisin Flannery hit a brace, one from the ground and the other from the hand to lead by 0-7 to 02 with 10 minutes left in the period. Then Limerick hit their best spell to put six points on the board with three pointed frees from Evan Curley, while Conor Higgins, Conor Morrissey and Gearoid Kennedy hit over from play. Oisin Flannery slipped in a pointed free to have the teams level as the half-time beckoned. However, Clare finished the stronger with a brace from free-taker Flannery to lead by 0-10 to 0-8 at the short whistle. 

On resumption, Morgan Carey increased Clare’s lead with a point, but Limerick bounced back with three fine points courtesy of Evan Curley(2) and Daire Murphy to draw level. Now the exchanges were becoming more intense as possession was keenly contested. Marksman Flannery hit over two frees before the best score of the match arrived. Donal Hunt banged in a super goal, but it was the defense-splitting run by Flannery that set the scene for the major strike with help from Cian O’Dea. That goal was a key stroke and it left Clare very much in the driver’s seat and staunch defending by Eoin Coulter, Enna Barry, Cian O’Dea and company ensured that they remained in pole position while man of the match Flannery kept adding to his impressive statistics up front.  Limerick added a few points, but the result was no longer in doubt.  They will rue their early misses and once they get their targets in line, I expect they will become a much more formidable force. It was also great to see a few American-born players doing remarkably well at hurling.  

Clare: Ronan Callinann, Tadgh O’Connell, Eoin Coulter, Liam O’Connor, Cian O’Dea, Eanna Barry, Tadgh Connellan, Evan Duggan, Pierce Lillis, Daryl Gaughan(0-1), Donal Hunt(1-3), Morgan Carey(0-4), Ryan Mulligan, Oisin Flannery(0-12), Kenny McNamara. Subs Paudie Brady, Ciaran O’Connor, Paudie Kyne, Eoin Cahill, Seamus Cahill, Colin O’Connor.

Limerick: Evan Devenney, Mike Ward, Fiachra McDonagh, James Breen, Evan Ryan, Aaron Dunlea, Emmett Hunter, Shane Doheny, Gearoid Kennedy(0-2), Daire Murphy(0-2), Evan Curley(0-5), Conor Higgins(0-2), Cathal Carew, Conor Morrissey(0-3), Lorcan Kennedy(0-1). Subs Pat Brennan, Niall McKenna, Owen O’Toole, Eoin Kennedy. Man of Match Oisin Flannery, Referee Chris Dalton.



Westmeath 4-18   Tipperary 3-7

This senior hurling clash had a few contentious points. First there was an umpire who played the role of statue rather than a decision-maker is assigning scores and wides. There were also concerns raised about the accuracy of numeration on the jerseys of some players. 

Meanwhile back on the playing field, this was quite an exciting game as both sides had stellar patches as the odds shifted back and forth.

 The first quarter was relatively even, though Westmeath had a point advantage, 0-5 to 0-4 at the first water break. David Mangan(2), Mikey Cullen(2) and Sean Stones were Westmeath’s flag-raisers. Responding for Tipperary were Darragh Hynes(3) and Ruadhan Mulrooney. 

After hydration the Lakesiders shot over a quick brace courtesy of chief marksman Mangan and Conor O’Shea. However for the remainder of the period Tipp were in top form to put an unanswered 1-7 on the board to lead by 1-11 to 0-7 at the short whistle. AJ Willis led the scoring spree with a fine long range effort and John Tierney matched with an equally fine effort. The points kept raining over as Mulrooney, Burns, Hynes and company hit minors before Mossy O’Connor goaled as half time approached.  Upon resumption it seemed as Tipp were on the victory trail as John Tierney pointed, thus giving his team an eight-point lead. However Westmeath slowly began to find their rhythm and more importantly the range, while simultaneously stalling Tipp’s momentum.  David Mangan, aka Mango, got the score board moving with a brace and John Melia came off the bench to hit the target.  Then came a major strike, a goal, as Mangan blasted a free through a packed goal-mouth to reduce the deficit more. 

So at the end of the third quarter the score-line read 1-14 to 1-10 as Tipp had been limited to just two Ruadhan Mulrooney points during the third quarter. Well if Tipperary dominated the second quarter, Westmeath unleashed a major scoring spree in the fourth quarter to emphatically claim the spoils. To illustrate the magnitude of the comeback consider that they were still in arrears by four points with just a quarter left to play. They hit 3-7 in that time frame, and ended up winning by ten points. David Langan, the player of the match, kicked off the scoring bonanza with a brace and midfielder Cullen was on target too. Enda Stones came off the bench and made his presence immediately with a goal and a point. Gary Corless and Mangan added two more but Mark Ellis raised Tipp’s hopes with a well-executed goal reducing the deficit to just two points with five minutes left on the clock, but that was as close as the Tipp men would get. Eamon Brennan worked his way in for a goal and Owen McCabe, son of Brian from another era, followed up with another goal. Then center-back Ger. McPartland finished with a superb point to bring down the curtain on perhaps Westmeath’s greatest comebacks.  

Westmeath: Dan Motthew, Conor O’Shea(0-1), Josh Dennehy, Brian McPartland, Conor Caulfield, Ger. McPartland(0-1), Cian Murry, Adam Stones(0-1), Mickey Cullen(0-3), Owen McCabe(1-0), David Mangan(1-8), Garry Corless(0-1), Aidan Long, Eamon Brennan(1-0), Sean Stones(0-1). Subs Enda Stones(1-1), Enda Conaty, Alan Sherlock, John Melia(0-1), Tiernan Donnefrey, Emmett O’Conghaile, Padraic Doolin.

Tipperary: Keith Robinson, Colin O’Brien, Henry Keyes, Campbell Boyd, Rory Carty, Bill Maher, Mark Ellis(1-0), Tom O’Meara, Tommy Burns(0-1), John Tierney(0-3), Darragh Hynes(0-5), Ruadhan Mulrooney(0-4),  Mossy O’Connor(1-1), AJ Ellis(0-1), Tommy Kavanagh. Subs. Mike Cronin, Frank Kennedy, Ross Butler, John O’Neill, Evan Deegan, David Ryan, Caolan Conroy, Kyle Creamer, Sean Goherty,  Fiachra Scott, Conor Hammersley. Man of Match David Mangan, Referee Patrick McNeilis.


Waterford 5-22  Hoboken 0-10

The score line tells the story here, Waterford had away too much firepower for a greatly beleaguered Hoboken for three quarters of the game.  The first quarter was relatively even, 1-6 to 0-5 with Jason O’Donoghue scoring the goal before the first water break. Early Waterford scorers were Barry Mahoney, Aidan Organ and Mickey Hanlon.  Main respondents for Hoboken were Dara Walsh, Kevin Hannigan and Enda Fahey. The flood gates opened in the second quarter as Waterford’s lead mushroomed to 2-13 to just 0-8 for Hoboken at the intermission  The rout continued in the second half, but in fairness to Hoboken thoroughly great outplayed and outscored they battled away to the final whistle

Waterford: Michael Egan, Peter Gallagher, David McCaul, Joe McBride, James Bermingham, Daragh Moran, Lar McDonald, Jason O’Donoghue, Darren O’Donoghue, Ruairi Slaine, Barry Mahoney, Conor Lynch, Mikey Hanlon, Aidan Organ, Kevin Larkin. Subs John Joyce, Keelan Hickey, Nollag Brophy, Oisin Brophy, Sean O’Connor, Bobby O’Regan, Stephen Maroney.

Hoboken: Cillian McNamara, Jack Marytn, James Rogers, Harry O’Connor, Rory Lawler, Wiilie Maloney, Jaris Woods, Enda Fahey, Pauric McNamara, Declan Fahey, Dara Walsh, Stephen Power, Liam O’Donovan, Kevin Hannigan, Tom Gordan. Subs Eoin O’Callaghan, Manny Sweeney, Adrian Croton. Man of Match Barry Mahoney, Referee Chris Dalton.


On Wednesday, the New York footballers travel to Ireland to compete in the Tailteann Cup against Laois, who finished as runners-up to Fermanagh in Group 3. They lost to the Erne Boys, 3-11 to 2-13. The game will be played in Portlaois, Laois’s home venue.  Laois will be formidable opponents as they topped Division three in the League, easily beating Leitrim in the final by 3-14 to 0-9 at Croke Park,  Chief scorers that day were: Even O’Carroll(0-6), also man of the match, Paul Kingston(1-2), Eoin Lowry(1-2), Ben Dempsey (1-0), Mark Barry (0-2) and Kieran Lillis(0-2) The New York team will be based in Mullingar. New York’s panel; Adam Loughlin Stones, Cailin O’Rourke, Caolain Mathers, Cian O’Dea, Colm Shalvey, Bobby O’Regan, Danny Corridan, Aaron Traynor, Emmet Loughran, Emmet O’Connghaile, Eoghan McElligot, Israel Ilunga, Jack Reilly, James Walsh, Jamie Boyle, Joey Grace, Kevin Rafferty, Killian Butler, Liam Kearney, Mikey Boyle, Mikey Brosnan, Niall McCarthy, Oisin Mathers, Rob Wharton, Ryan Corrigan, Sean Reilly, Shane Bolger, Shane Brosnan, Tiarnan Mathers and Noel Hatton. Among a few notable absentees are Frank Reilly and Mike Argue. New York lost to Mayo in the Connacht Championship by the score of 2-21 to 2-6. The lineout was: Joey Price, Shane Bolger, Jamie Boyle(1-0), Tadgh O’Riordan; Shane Brosnan, Cian O’Dea, Robert Wharton(0-1);James Walsh, Emmett O’Connaghaile; Tiernan Mathers, Frank O’Reilly(1-2), Pierce Lillis; Sean Reilly, Michael Argue, Killian Butler(0-2). Subs used Liam Kearney, Jordan Ajani, Mikey Brosnan(0-1), Israel Ilunga and Adam Loughlin-Stones. The manager is Alan O’Mara and his backroom team includes: Ronan McGinley, Michael Cunningham, Jeff Farrell, David McNamara and Dean O’Donnell. Last year New York lost to Sligo, and this year Laois will be tough opposition.