Maurice Nolan’s boys were out of the blocks early and often. A defence splitting move saw half back Joe Murphy combine with the menacing Dacel Fwamba (Captain) who in turn fed full forward Conor Kelly. Kelly blasted to the net, the green was raised and the Continent was off and running. Wing man Sean Kenny was lively all evening and put his name on the sheet within the first four minutes with a brilliant individual point. Erin’s Own appeared rattled but to their credit – they kept battling. But there was more pain to come.
The importance of chasing and harrying could never be overstated and it was this relentless work rate that was to yield the next two crucial scores of the game. Captain Fwamba led by example and closed down the Comer goalie, as he tried to emerge from his parallelogram. He finished the spilled ball to the net and the roar of approval went high into the evening air. Jamie Ryan seemed inspired and did likewise minutes later. Space was at a premium, so Jamie soccered to the net to put ten points between the teams with five minutes on the clock. Luke Hogan followed up with a fabulous individual point – his Tipp roots plain for all to see. A Conor Heary free rounded off what was a devastating opening ten minutes by the boys in white and green.
Castlecomer deserve great credit for the manner of their comeback. Three points on the spin helped settle their nerves but they were to suffer another setback with the concession of yet another goal. Dacel Fwamba made an incisive run and pulled first time on the sliotar to shake the net again. Both teams then shared six points evenly (OLG: Kenny, Kelly and Heary) to bring the first half to a close.
H/T: O’Loughlin Gaels 4-06, Erin’s Own 0-07
The second half saw the introduction of David Fogarty, Jack Sheridan, Matt Russell, Declan Coffey and Odhran Lawlor. All were lively and played their part for the team. Conor Heary took up where he left off by pointing a dead ball to increase the St John’s Parish Boys lead to twelve. Comer’s star players then began to shine. Players such as Jack Buggy, Kevin Brennan and Lee Holden in particular caught the eye. But Conor Heary was prominent at this stage scoring from both the ground and out of the hand. Erin’s Own were fighting for their lives and mustered up a gallant final fling to reduce the ever widening deficit. They added 1-05 (1-04 from play) in the last quarter but were undone by a Barry Lawlor goal that settled matters once and for all.
Jamie Malone commanded his square well and his distribution was excellent. The full back line of Collins, Butler and Kearns was miserly in defence and cool under pressure. The half back line of Hogan, Young and Murphy defended and attacked with equal diligence. The midfield pairing of Murphy and Baird battled hard for supremacy throughout. The half forward line of Heary, Lawlor and Kenny made telling contributions on the scoreboard and from general play. The full forward line of Fwamba, Kelly and Ryan led from the front for the entire sixty minutes.
F/T: O’Loughlin Gaels 5-12, Erin’s Own 1-14
Jamie Malone, John Collins, Mikey Butler, Jack Kearns, Luke Hogan 0-1, Jamie Young, Joe Murphy, Oisin Murphy, Sean Baird 0-1, Conor Heary 0-5 (4f’s), Barry Lawlor 1-0, Sean Kenny 0-2, Dacel Fwamba 2-01, Conor Kelly 1-02, Jamie Ryan 1-0, Subs used: David Fogarty, Jack Sheridan, Matt Russell, Declan Coffey, Odhran Lawlor. Panellists: Jay Meagher, Fiachra O’Callaghan, Jake Fahy
O’Loughlin Gaels would like to congratulate the U14 team on their prestigious win and wish them well for the Championship. We would also like to sincerely thank Maurice Nolan (manager) and his team of Michael Nolan, Sheamie Cummins, Bryan Skehan and Brian Kelly for all their hard work.