‘Loaf’ leads the Emmet’s fightback

Antrim Hurling League Division 3

Cushendun Emmet’s 2-20 Bredagh 4-9

Cushendun scored a morale boosting win ahead of Saturday’s Intermediate Hurling Championship game with Sarsfields when they came from nine point down to beat visitors Breadgh in Tuesday evening’s Division 3 League game at the Rigs.                  Last year’s Junior champions have been struggling for form this season and when the fell 3-1 to 0-1 behind after just six minutes their prospects did not look good. However with Conlaoth ‘Loaf’ McNeill leading the charge they fought their way back into the game and boosted by a McNeill goal from a penalty they ended the opening half on top, leading by 1-12 to 3-4.                                                     After the change of ends they pushed on and another Loaf goal on fifty minutes put them in charge, winning in the end by five, despite conceding a last minute goal.

Bredagh flew from the traps at the start of the game and goals from Michael Scullion, Ian Galway and Sean McGourty, plus a point from Costello had them 3-1 to 0-1 ahead, the Emmet’s point coming from Harry Kilgore. The comeback started with three pointed frees from Conor McHugh and when James Morgan and McNeill also grabbed points they were back in business. McNeill was having a bigger influence on the play as the game went on and two points inside a minute were followed by a goal from a penalty on 21 minutes after James Morgan had been hauled down in the large square. The big man was on a roll and he added two more from play to bring his team level by the 22nds minute. A Rory Costello point on 25 minutes briefly put Bredagh back on terms, but Loaf restored the Emmet’s lead with a brilliant point direct from a sideline cut before David Kilgore chipped in with another from play to give the home team a two point cushion at the break.

Another McNeill point early in the second half put three between the teams and two in quick succession by Dominic McQuillan gave them a bit of breathing space. Bredagh kept in touch with a series of points from Ian Galway frees but McNeill’s second goal direct from a free on 49 minutes killed the game off.

The man of the match added two more, while Pearse Bannon and Harry Kilgore chipped in with one apiece to go eight clear, and even though Costello grabbed an injury time goal for Bredagh it was to have no bearing on the overall outcome.

CUSHENDUN: Eoin Magee, Sean Hamilton, Aidan Corbett, Michael Dunne, Gavin McCormick, Donal O’Hara, Niall McAuley, Thomas Scally, Conor McHugh, Dominic Sharkey, Dominic McQuillan, Harry Kilgore, James Morgan, Conlaoth McNeill, David Kilgore

Pearse Bannon for Mickey Dunne.

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