TOM LYONS REPORTS
A DOMINANT last quarter in which they went from a point down to four in front saw stronger Clonakilty clinch a classic clash in the semi-final of the RCM Tarmacadam junior A hurling championship in Bandon last Saturday evening.
Dohenys scored a late goal from sub Kevin O’Mahony to narrow the gap to a single point, but Clon held on, despite the Dunmanway men having several chances to draw this epic.
David Lowney provided three of Clon’s points, from frees, in the first quarter, but was generally well bottled up by the Doheny half-back line in which Eoin Lavers and Jerry McCarthy excelled. Brothers, Sean White, who had to retire injured before half time, and Brian, added two from play. In reply, Mark Buckley hit two from frees, the strong Don O’Driscoll had two from play and outstanding midfielder Bill Murphy added a fifth, as the teams stood level, 0-5 each at the first water break.
Dohenys upped the pace even further in the second quarter and Clon struggled, failing to score from play. With Buckley punishing Clon’s tendency to foul, hitting four points, and Bill Murphy adding two, Dohenys were four to the good at the break, 0-11 to 0-7. Lowney converted two frees for Clon.
‘The introduction of Martin Scally at midfield for the injured Sean White, and Tiarnán O’Connell at wing forward, definitely improved us in the second half. They got really involved and gave us an extra edge,’ said Clonakilty manager Michael Harte.
Scally opened the half with a point before Buckley and Lowney swapped frees. Then in the 37th minute, the improving Sean McEvoy was fouled in the Doheny square and Clon goalkeeper Mark White blazed the penalty to the net. Sides level, 0-12 to 1-9. Two frees from Buckley and one from play by Lowney, who had moved to midfield with good effect, had Dohenys still a point in front, 0-14 to 1-10, at the water break.
The last quarter belonged to the Clon men, who looked stronger and slightly fitter. They reeled off five unanswered points from Clancy, Lowney (2) Cian O’Donovan and McEvoy to lead by four with two minutes remaining. It seemed all over but it wasn’t as Dohenys, launched their late offensive which fell just short.
Clonakilty: D Lowney 0-9 (7f); M White 1-0 (penalty); S White, T Clancy, B White, S McEvoy, C O’Donovan, M Scally 0-1 each. Dohenys: M Buckley 0-9 (8f); K O’Mahony 1-0; B Murphy 0-3; D O’Driscoll 0-2.
Clonakilty: M White; N Barrett, D O’Regan, C Crowley; D Murphy, J O’Brien, E Deasy; S White, E Ryan; B White, D Lowney, T Clancy; C O’Donovan, T Anglin, S McEvoy. Subs: M Scally for S White (30), T O’Connell for E Ryan (ht), S O’Donoghue for E Deasy (62).
Dohenys: D Dullea; J Farrell, T O’Leary, D Collins; J McCarthy, E Lavers, B McCarthy; J Kelly, B Murphy; S Daly, F Herlihy, D O’Driscoll; A O’Donovan, C Lynch, M Buckley. Subs: P McCarthy for C Lynch (38), K O’Mahony for S Daly (45), D Farrell for A O’Donovan (50).
Referee: M O’Leary (Diarmuid Ó Mathúna).