O’Loughlin’s Junior B team earned themselves a Leinster Final appearance by beating Wexford’s Kilmore GAA on a healthy scoreline of 1-19 to 0-5. They now meet Clarinbridge in the Final scheduled for Saturday at 3pm in Heywood Community School, Ballinakill. Best of luck.
Junior B’s are Leinster Champions
A strong crowd of hardened O’Loughlin Gael supporters travelled to Ballinakill on Saturday afternoon to witness another powerful performance by a team proudly wearing the white and green. Big respect to these lads who outstretched their arms to catch sliotar and fend off ash in the icy conditions provided while many in attendance kept their appreciation muffled with their applauding hands remaining in the warmth of overcoat pockets. Those who travelled were treated to another great day for O’Loughlin Gaels GAA Club as their team were crowned Leinster Champions overcoming old foe Clarinbridge GAA by a scoreline of 1-11 to 1-09.
The game started well for Clarinbridge getting ahead early while our lads took time to find their stride and get used to the unusual all-weather playing surface at the wonderful facilities of Heywood Community School. When they did however none could match them and O’Loughlins found themselves cruising with 5 mins remaining in the first half. A goal from Jason Forde however followed by another point took the shine off the O’Louglins first half performance however and the teams went for their sliced oranges all square at 1-3 to 0-6.
The second half again adopted the same pattern and the Galway men went ahead after a few early exchanges. The St. Johns men got on top again after good work from Alan O’Brien and Ricky Leydon tightened up the defence. This created the platform for good attacking play and after a good passage of play for O’Loughlin midfielder Andy Kearns burrowed his way into the opposition defence and got the decisive score of the game directing the ball past the keeper and putting O’Loughlin Gaels two points ahead on 40 mins. It was point for point after that with O’Loughlin Gaels maintaining the advantage with points from John Doyle, James Lenihan and free-taker Barry Hogan. O’Loughlins will feel they were better than the scoreline suggests but in these ice-cold conditions anything goes. All celebrations are set aside now as the players and management headed by Dave Ward prepare for an All-Ireland semi-final to be played in three weeks. Well done to all concerned.
O’Loughlin Gaels: Mark Croughan, Kevin O’Brien, Michael Lambert, Eoin Croughan, Alan O’Brien, Rickey Leydon, Andy Cantwell, Vinny Wallace, Andy Kearns (1-0), James Lenihan (0.1), Fearghal Brennan (0-1), Martin Gibbons, Barry Hogan (0-5 fs), John Doyle (0-2), Ben Leydon (0-2), Shane O’Neill (Capt), Stephrn Tyrell, David Rice, Richie Moylan, Joe Walsh, Andy Smith, John Corcoran, Michael Twomey, Kevin McGarry, Jamie Kavanagh, Evan Walsh.