North Antrim Senior Hurling – Feis Cup semi-final
Loughgiel 2-17 Dunloy 1-15
By Darach O’Mullan
Loughgiel booked their place in the final of the Senior Feis Cup when they travelled to Pearse Park and beat the Cuchullains by five points in Thursday evening’s semi-final. A strong start to the game which saw the Shamrocks grab two goals in the opening quarter set them on their way gave them an edge they would hold until the end.
Loughgiel were competitive from the throw-in with a quick deliverance of a point by Rian McMullan was followed by one from Eddie McCloskey. Loughgiel continued to hold the upper hand as Michael McGarry scored Loughgiel’s first goal.
Despite the great defence of Rory and Ronan McCloskey, Dunloy’s Ronan Molloy and Chris McMahon each scored points in a counter attack. However, after the ball fired across the field, it landed in the hands of John Francis Connolly who struck the ball into the back of the Dunloy net for the visitors’ second goal. Before the first water break, Paul Shiels scored a point from a free which brought the score to 2-05 to 0-5 by. Dunloy continued in their counter attack with points by Kevin Molloy and Nicky McKeague, but despite this, Eddie McCloskey and Donal McKinley continued to prove a challenge for home side. Dunloy stayed in touch and Nicky McKeague kept reeling in the points through frees, which brought the half time score to 2-09 to 0-09.
The second half had shown much more intensity between both teams as Dunloy continued to push forward against their red and white rivals. Ryan McGarry and Nicky McKeague scored more points, to close the gap, and when Ronan Molloy got in for a Cuchuallains goal to close the gap even further and at the second water break, the gap was down to just one goal, Dunloy 2-12 – Loughgiel 1-12.
During the last fifteen minutes, the match was exceptionally intense. Despite this, the majority of the final scores were dictated by frees. Rian McMullan and Eddie McCloskey brought more scores to the away team despite the efforts of Gabriel McTaggart and Nicky McKeague. A final point by Shan McGrath, who played exceptionally well in his new midfield position, secured Loughgiel’s victory and secured them a place in Sunday evening’s final against Cushendall in Cushendun at 6-30
- Calum Mullan 2. Oran Quinn 3. Conor McKinley 4. Conor Kinsela 5. Ryan McGarry 6. Paul Shiels 7. Eamon Smyth 8. Ciaran Elliott 9. Liam McCann 10. Kevin Molloy 11. Anton McGrath 12. Ronan Molloy 13. Nicky McKeague 14. Chris McMahon 15. Shane Dooey 16. Paul Doherty 17. Phelim Duffin 18. Kevin McKeague 19. Kevin McQuillan 20. Gabriel McTaggart 21. Barry Scott 22. Eoin McFerran 23. Calum Scullion 24. Paudie McGilligan 25. Oran Shivers 26. Ciaran McQuillan 27. Cahir McCloskey 28. Rory Mullan
- Chrissy O’Connell 2. Tiernan Coyle 3. Rory McCloskey 4. Ronan McCloskey 5. Ciaran McKay 6. Seamus Dobbin 7. Daniel McPeake 8. Eddie McCloskey 9. Shan McGrath 10. Donal McKinley 11. Callum McKendry 12. Christy McGarry 13. Rian McMullan 14. John Francis Connolly 15. Michael McGarry 17. OD Laverty 18. Enda Óg McGarry 19. Aodhan McFadden 20. Cormac McFadden 21. Shaun McFadden