Kildare too strong for Antrim minors

Leinster Minor Hurling Championship

Kildare 1-13 Antrim 0-7

Antrim made their exit from the Leinster Minor Hurling Championship at Abbotstown on Saturday when they were beaten by Kildare , who had nine points to spare at the end. Despite losing a man to a straight red card after 19 minutes Antrim fought back well to trail by just two points at half time, but Kildare took control in the second half and added a goal and four points between the 42nd and 56th minutes to take the game away from the young Saffrons and book their place in the quarter finals against Offaly.  

Early points from Conn Kehoe and Conor Treacy gave Kildare and early cushion before Padraig McKillop opened Antrim’s account with a pointed free on five minutes. Two more from Kehoe frees and another from play by Treacy put the Lillywhites 5-1 clear but Antrim full forward Fintan McQuillan closed the gap to three just before the first half water break.

Midfielder Kehoe had just restored Kildare’s four point cushion on 19 minutes when disaster struck for Antrim when they lost centre forward McKillop to a red card, and when Killian Harrington increased the Kildare lead to five the Saffrons were in trouble. However they showed great character in the closing ten minutes of the first half when points from Fintan McQuillan, Anthony McGarrigle and Aidan Scullion left them just two in arrears at the short whistle.

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The gap remained at two for the first ten minutes of the new half as Kehoe and McQuillan exchanged points from play but Kildare then took a real grip on the game as the Antrim challenge faded. Kehoe added two more from frees, centre back Cian Boran and right half forward Fionn Maher tagged on two from play before corner forward Charlie Sherridan delivered the killer blow with a  goal from play in the 56th minute. Antrim pulled a point back through a McQuillan free on 58 minutes but it was to prove their final score as Kildare cruised to victory.

ANTRIM – Colm McKeegan, Shane McKenna, Ben McAuley, Dubhaltach Wilson, Pearse Shortt, Eoin Trainor, Conor Boyle, Ruairi McCormick, Eoin McFerran, Aidan Scullion, Padriag McKillop, Ruairi Murray, Darragh Turley, Fintan McQuillan, Anthony McGarrigle.

KILDARE – Ben Loughlin, Stephen Moran, Liam O’Reilly, Daniel O’Meara, Fionn Cooke, Cian Boran, Darragh Guerin, Ciaran Flanagan, Conn Kehoe, Conor Treacy, Niall Doran, Fionn Maher, Charlie Sherridan, Alan Goss, Killian Harrington.

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