Craobh Rua secure final spot

AIB Ulster Junior club hurling semi-final

Craobh Rua (Armagh) 0-14 Con Magee’s (Antrim) 0-11

Con Magees’ bid to make their first Ulster Club Hurling final came up short once again when they were beat by Armagh champions Craobh Rua in Saturday’s semi-final at Davitt’s Park, Belfast. The Glenravel men started well enough and were three points ahead early in the second quarter but Craobh Rua clawed their way back, thanks to some excellent free taking from Tiarnan O’Hare, and the Armagh men were only a point in arrears at half time. (0-7 to 0-6)

Playing with the slight breeze in the second half Craobh Rua went ahead but Con Magees came back to level with another pointed free from O’Loan and they retook the lead with a point from substitute Sean McKay. However the final quarter saw Craobh Rua get a grip on the game and they pushed on to win by three.

Craobh Rua full forward Ryan Lewis gave his team and excellent start when he found an early opening and pointed from play, but two in a row from Conleth O’Loan frees had Glenravel in front. Tiernan O’Hare pulled one back from a free but two excellent scores from play by Declan Traynor helped the Antrim champions to a three point lead by the first water break.

The second quarter saw O’Hare close the gap from another free and though Declan Traynor hit a couple of top class points from play for the Con Magees, O’Hare’s accuracy saw Craobh Rua eat into the gap and by half time just a point separated the sides. (0-7 to 0-6)

Another point from a placed ball by O’Hare restored parity, and the Camlough men went ahead for the first time with another O’Hare score. Sean McKay brought Con Magees level with twelve minutes of normal time to play with a neat point from a snap shot from the 45 metre line but Craobh Rua were controlling possession around the middle of the field and they were getting on top. O’Loan was off target from a couple of difficult frees late on and the Armagh champions went two clear with two more points from the excellent Tiarnan O’Hare, before sealing the one with another deep in injury time.

An excellent win for the Armagh champions, who were forced to field without football star Jarly Og Burns. Glenravel will be bitterly disappointed but when they look back on their season in a few days’ time they can reflect on what was overall a very good year for the club.

Craobh Rua  Camlough

C Rowantree; D McCloy, S O’Keefe, B McKevitt: M Garvey, O O’Hare, M Doran; P Garvey, F Burns 0-1; F Bradley 0-1, T O’Hare 0-10 (f), S Watters; R Casey, R Lewis 0-1, C McKevitt 0-1.

Subs: D Harris for F Bradley (21), F O’Callaghan for R McKevitt (40), F McCann for R Casey (41), F Bradley for S Watters (54), C Brannigan for D Harris (60)

Con Magee’s Glenravel

 Ronan Donnelly, Brian O’Neill, Shanlee Kerr, Johnny Fyfe capt, Padge O’Neill, Eoin McCusker, Michael McDonnell, James Duffin, Charlie Henry, Delan Traynor 0-4, Niall Donnelly, Cathal Hynds, Conleth O’Loan 0-5 (4f) Rian Lennon 0-1, Damien O’Hagan.

Subs: Sean McKay 0-1 for D O’Hagan (HT), Sean Burns for N Donnelly (57)

Referee: A McAleer (Donegal)

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