CASEMENT SC JHC Semi-Final
St. Brigid’s Cloughmills 1-20 Lamh Dhearg 0-9
St. Brigid’s Cloughmills recovered from a slow start to sweep aside the challenge of a Lamh Dhearg side who flattered to deceive in the opening exchanges of this Casement Social Club JHC semi-final in Cloughmills on Saturday afternoon.
After Mickey Devlin had given the home side the lead with an excellent long range point it was the Hannastown side who sprung to life to hit the next four points with Odhran Waldron, Adam Murray, Michael Herron and Murray again from a 7th minute free putting them three in front and looking good.
The visitors would only add one further first half point however as Cloughmills suddenly realised they had a game on their hands and a couple of superb side-line cuts from Michael Devlin, which sandwiched an Eoin Dobbin point from play had them back on level terms by the 13th minute.
Dobbin followed with a couple of converted frees by the 17th minute and a fine point from Reece Watt from close to the side-line had the ‘Biddies’ three in front and in control.
The Cloughmills side were now firing on all fronts as their opponents struggled to contain their pace and precision and James Doherty got his name on the score board with two well taken points.
Another long range effort from the sweet striking Devlin and a converted ‘65’ by Eoin Dobbin moved the Cloughmills side seven ahead by the 23d minute with Mark Finnegan replying with Lamh Dhearg’s first point for 23 minutes to leave the home side 0-11 to 0-5 ahead at the break.
After a slow start, the Cloughmills defence had taken control but they were thankful to Chris McKernan who made a sharp save to deny the visitors in the second minute of the new half.
Donal Martin did get the first point of the half for the visitors in the 5th minute but the Hannastown side were conceding too many frees and these were being punished by the radar like accuracy of Eoin Dobbin.
Dobbin added two more in the 6th and 9th minutes with Liam Kearns getting one in between from play and as St. Brigid’s threatened to overrun the opposition, Conor McConville in the Lamh Dhearg goal brought off an excellent save to deny them.
Dobbin added another point from a free before things went from bad to worse for the visitors when Aidan McGuigan got his marching orders following a second yellow card in the 11th minute.
To their credit Lamh Dhearg responded with a pointed free from Adam Murray and another from play from Mark Finnegan to give them a glimmer of hope but the Cloughmills reply was immediate and decisive.
Eoin Dobbin added another pointed free and substitute Odhran McCurdy put the contest to bed with a goal in the 25th minute with Dobbin adding to his ever increasing total from the placed ball in the 26th and 28th minutes.
The Hannastown side kept fighting against impossible odds and Christopher McKernan pulled off his second good save of the half as they briefly threatened before Odhran Waldron struck a late consolation point to bring matters to a conclusion
After a slow start, Cloughmills went on to play some excellent hurling and their well organised defensive structure denied Lamh Dhearg the space and time they needed.
Mickey Devlin’s two points from side-line cuts and a couple of massive efforts from deep in his own half were worth the admission money on their own while Eoin Dobbin’s free taking was right out of the top drawer.
Cloughmills now face neighbours, Glen Rovers in the final in a fortnight’s time and it promises to be an interesting decider with Cloughmills having defeated Armoy in the Junior Feis Cup final earlier in the year but Armoy gained revenge when they met in the league in Armoy.
Cloughmills: 1 Christopher McKernan, 2 Sean McKendry, 3 Kevin O’Boyle, 4 Stephen Martin, 5 Johnny Duffin, 6 Geoffery Og Laverty, 7 Corey Blair, 8 Joe Smyth, 9 Martin Dobbin, 10 Reece Watt, 11 Ruairi Laverty, 12 Liam Kearns, 13 James Doherty, 14 Michael Devlin, 15 Eoin Dobbin, 18 Odhran McCurdy, 21 Oran Corrigan
Lamh Dhearg: 1 Conor McConville, 2 Christopher Nolan, 3 Sean Paul Gibson, 4 Tiernan McKenna, 5 Daniel Murray, 6 Padraig Mervyn, 7 Fionn Mervyn, 8 Ciaran Boyd, 9 Aidan McGuigan, 10 Mark Finnegan, 11 Declan Straney, 12 Adam Murray, 13 Odhran Waldron, 14 Michael Herron, 15 Donal Martin
Referee: Piarais McCaffery