CLANN NA nGAEL 0-8
CASTLEHAVEN finished the season with silverware when their junior football team won the Division 2 final of the Dubliner Cheese Carbery-Beara league in freezing conditions under lights in Dunmanway on Thursday of last week.
The better all-round ability of the Haven and the sharp-shooting of Stephen Hurley and Kevin O’Donovan proved too much for a Clann na nGael outfit, which was short many of its top players, but had the consolation of promotion to Division 1 of the league for 2019.
Despite being short a number of regulars, the Scorchers more than held their own for most of the first half but were fortunate that the Haven scorned a number of clear goal chances throughout the game. Ironically, the winners did open their scoring with a goal, in the 10th minute, from the lively Kevin O’Donovan, following a Jerome O’Brien opening point for the Scorchers. That was to prove the only goal of the game, but there were plenty near misses as the irate mentors tried to stay warm on the sideline.
‘It was bitterly cold out there but the players did very well in the conditions,’ said Castlehaven manager, Batt Maguire. ‘We were better balanced, I suppose, and we had a good mixture of young and old. Our goalie, Brendan Deasy, is celebrating his 41st birthday tomorrow and Liam Collins, 40, came on as a sub.
‘We also had a few lively 18-year-olds on duty. We’ve had a good year at junior level. The new senior championship suited us as there was a gap of five months after our first senior round in April and we were able to hold all our players in junior during those months. It’s good to finish the year with some silverware and to be playing division 1 next season.’
The Scorchers responded well to the Haven goal with fine points from the speedy Daniel Hernandez and impressive wing back, Paul Hickey to level the scores, with Andy McCarthy very strong at midfield, but it was the Haven to the fore, 1-2 to 0-3, at the end of the first quarter with points from outstanding centre back, David Whelton, and Stephen Hurley.
After Kieran Hegarty had blazed just wide for the Haven, Timmy Roberts closed the gap with a Scorchers’ free but that was to be their last score of the half as the Haven took control. With Stephen Hurley and David Whelton starring, and Rory Maguire doing well at midfield, the Haven had points from Hurley, 2, Daniel Hegarty and Kieran Hegarty to lead by 1-6 to 0-4 at the break, a decisive burst of scoring.
The second half started in competitive fashion with the sides sharing four points, Shane O’Donovan and Damien O’Brien, free, for the Scorchers and David Whelton and Kevin O’Donovan for the winners. A black card for the Haven’s Matt Limrick in the 42nd minute should have indicated a shift in favour of the Scorchers, but it was the Haven who responded better to the setback, with sub, Liam Collins, controlling affairs around the centre.
Two points by Stephen Hurley had the Haven seven points to the good starting the last quarter and, even though Timmy Roberts responded with two fine scores for the Scorchers, it was the Haven who upped their game in the closing stages.
With Tom O’Leary, Aidan Pearce, Patrick Bohane and Tom Beare all prominent, points by Bohane, free, O’Donovan, Whelton and Donovan again put a flattering look on the scoreboard for the winners.
It finished 1-14 to 0-8 and the league trophy was presented to the captain of the Haven team, Stephen Hurley, by Tom Lyons, vice-chairman of the SW Board.
Castlehaven – Kevin O’Donovan 1-4, Stephen Hurley 0-5, David Whelton 0-3, Daniel Hegarty and Patrick Bohane (1f) 0-1 each.
Clann na nGael – Timmy Roberts 0-3, Daniel Fernandez, Paul Hickey, Jerome O’Brien, Shane O’Donovan (1f) and Damien O’Brien (1f) 0-1 each.
Castlehaven: Brendan Deasy, Liam Browne, Tom O’Leary, Daniel O’Mahony, Aidan Pearce, David Whelton, Matt Limrick, Shane Kearney, Rory Maguire, Patrick Bohane, Daniel Hegarty, Tom Beare, Kieran Hegarty, Stephen Hurley, Kevin O’Donovan. Subs used: Darragh O’Neill and Liam Collins.
Clann na nGael: James O’Regan, Connie O’Mahony, JJ Collins, Cathal Hurley, Paul Hickey, Séamus O’Regan, Derek Crowley, Andy McCarthy, Paul Crowley, Shane O’Donovan, Jerome O’Brien, Timmy Roberts, Damien O’Brien, James Cahalane, Daniel Fernandez. Subs used: Daniel McCarthy snr, Eoin Daly, Eoin Daly snr.
Referee: John Forbes, Dohenys.