Carryduff edge it at Hightown

Shane Uí Neills   1-16     Carryduff   3-14                                                 

Venue. St. Enda’s GAC. Hightown Rd. Glengormley.

By Pete Hyndman

The last time these two clubs met was at the start of the League campaign, with a draw being the final result. This game was as tight as the previous encounter and served up a treat for the hurling purists. Ronan Beatty was the hero of the hour for the South Belfast boys with a personal tally of 3-07.

As early as 2 minutes Carryduff opened up a 4 point lead, with a point from their forward Ronan Beatty and then rattling the Glenarm net for a goal. The Feystown teams   reply was immediate with a trio of points. First score came from wing forward  Ciaran Magill from an acute angle out near the sideline. Ben O Boyle pointed next from midfield with Magill slotting over a free from 50 yards.                                     

On the resulting puck out Dylan Mc Laughlin jumped up to claim the ball and fed a hand-pass to Daniel Black who rifled the sliotar to the net!!    GAME ON!  This semi final was heating up with some sterling work from both defences working hard and after all the work from the Glen’s team to crawl back into the game back came Beatty who pounced in for his second major. Gareth Lynch added to the city teams tally with a free.                                                                                               

To their credit back came Shane O Neills with Daniel Black, Mc Laughlin and Magill all raising the white flag taking a narrow lead. At the end of this first quarter Michael Conway levelled the game before the short water break.                                                                                                                                                                                Glenarm pushed forward after the break with points from Dylan, and a double from Magill, his latter effort was a converted “65”.   Lynch replied with a free reducing the gap to two points.  Daniel Black and Ben O Boyle added a point each before the half time whistle.

HALF TIME SCORE.       Shane O Neill   1-11     Carryduff  2-04

With a strong wind advantage in this second period the Knockbracken club boys  reduced the arrears with a double from Beatty and Conor Cassidy driving over a point.Glenarm’s Aidan Scullion lit up the night sky with a fine solo effort from the midfield area. Carryduff’s tails where up in this third quarter and added another brace of points from Beatty(free) and Conor Mc Alister getting on the scoresheet, to level this tight tussle.

Again for the blues Dylan Mc Laughlin shifted a couple of heavy tackle’s and split the uprights for a great individual score. The score’s where level again when Beatty converted a free out on the wing. A  few moments later the big No. 13 Beatty punched the air with delight when he pointed to give his side the lead. Paddy Mc Auley shortly afterwards was shown a second yellow for dragging down his marker and sent off by the referee.

A strong evening sun was’nt helping Glenarm’s cause with the game slowly drifting away from them. Score’s where getting harder to get as the wind was slowing down any ball from defence. With the game in the final quarter the Beatty/Lynch combination resulted in two more points for the South Belfast boys.

On the 55th minute Glenarm’s Darren Hamill sent in a high ball towards the pavillion end but with the low sun the forwards could’nt see to get any contact on the sliotar.  A minute later Hamill then found his range and pointed from a dead ball effort. D. Mc Laughlin added to the Glenarm scoreline with a nice point trying to eat into the “Duff’s” lead.                                

Gareth Lynch pointed again putting three between the teams.Shane Uí Neill’s where throwing everything at Carryduff  in the final moments, a dropped ball in their box was pulled on by Sean O Boyle which agonisingly went over the bar for a point.  To add insult to injury a cleared ball fell into the path of Carryduff’s  Beatty who rounded his marker and put the ball beyond Hamill, for the forwards third major in this tight semi-final. The final whistle then blew to the delight of the Belfast team.

For the victors they now face Armagh Cuchulainn’s in the Final.  Ronan Beatty was the main threat for the Carryduff boys, hitting 3-07 in the process. Lynch also played well. Woods, Goodwin and Conway all deserve a mention.For Glenarm this was their first defeat all year in all competitions and deserve massive credit for that achievement. However a bitter pill to swallow as the boys know themselves they did’nt play to their strength’s. Paul Magill, Darren Hamill and Ben O Boyle tried hard in vain, with Magill, Black and Mc Laughlin the main scoring force.   

Shane O’Neills: Niall Hamill, Paul Magill, Barry Hamill, Ciaran Finnegan, Chrissy Matthews, Darren Hamill(0-01), Hugh Pat Mc Neill, Aidan Scullion(0-01), Ben O Boyle(0-02), Ciaran Magill (0-05 1f,165), Dylan Mc Laughlin(0-04), Sean O Boyle(0-01), Sean O Hare, Daniel Black(1-02), Kevin O Boyle. Subs used: Declan Mc Dermott for Ciaran Finnegan, Paddy Mc Auley for Hugh Pat Mc Neill. Conal Ward for Sean O Hare, Jake Hamilton for Kevin O Boyle.   subs. Kieran O Boyle, Ciaran O Boyle, Ryan Mc Loughlin, Joe Cunning, Darryl Mc Mullan.

Carryduff: Conor Mclornan, James Woods, Conor Cassidy(0-01), Ciaran Goodwin, Conal Haigney, James Lavery, Niall Mc Ardle, Michael Conway(0-01), Eoin Conway, Gareth Lynch(0-04, 2f), Sean O Callaghan, Ciaran O Callaghan, Ronan Beatty(3-07, 3f), Adrian Downey, Conor Mc Alister(0-01). Subs used: Aodhan Mc Manus, Mark Mc Conville, Eoin Rooney, Donal Teague, Donal Rooney, Michael Woods, Michael Collins, Ciaran Rogers, Lorcan Mc Caughey, Jack Laverty.

Referee: Brendan Toland (Lámh Dhearg)

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