Empathic Táin victory for Aodh Ruadh

Ulster Táin Hurling League Division 3
25 May 2014
Aodh Ruadh 2-10
MacCumhaill's 0-4
Scarvey

Aodh Ruadh confined MacCumhaill's to a solitary point from open play in this comfortable Ulster Táin Hurling League division three encounter. MacCumhaill's were down a sizeable county contingent of Justin Magee, Paddy Hannigan, Ciaran Matthewson Jamesie Donnelly and Dylan Rafferty with Lee Henderson still away on a three month stint in the States. Still, Aodh Ruadh showed some fine flashes of hurling to take the points on a damp Sunday evening at Father Tierney Park. As with the senior footballers in Ballintra the previous night, the winning of the game was in a powerful half forward line perfomance which created and took scores with great brio.

It took the sides some time to settle and when the first score finally arrived it was Aodh Ruadh who got off to the ideal start, Conor Gilmartin doubling on a dangerous ball and lashing it to Barry McGranaghan's left. McGranaghan would have been disappointed not to have done better with the effort.

Two minutes later Ciaran Kilgannon got his first score of the game, floating over from the centre of the field. Three minutes on and it was Chris Kilgannon's turn to get the score board moving, this time with a placed ball.

In the 13th MacCumhaill's finally stitched together a fluent passage of play and Andrew Burns was on hand to point from close range for their first score of the game and, amazingly, the only one they would manage from open play. Aaron McAuley then brought it back to a goal with a decent long range free.

Aodh Ruadh were able to put a wee kick on before the half time whistle. First Conor Gilmartin was the creator for Peter Horan to slip over from out on the left. Then Ciaran Kilgannon battled hard down the right and had to be stopped at the cost of a free. Chris Kilgannon slotted over to make the half time scores 1-4 to 0-2 in favour of the homesters.

Chris Kilgannon picked up where he left off in the second half, swinging an over-the-shoulder shot across the black spot with four minutes gone. Aodh Ruadh were well on top and after a sustained spell of pressure the ball was once again worked to Kilgannon, positioned this time on the arc of the D, and he split the posts to push the margin out to seven points. Conor Gilmartin got back in on the scoring act from the puck out, drifting over a lovely effort from 30 metres.

The Ernesiders had a superb chance for their second goal of the game in the 37th minute when Chris Kilgannon put a shooting chance on a plate for Micky Bowring, but the shot didn't match the build-up and MacCumhaill's heaved a sigh of relief. Ciaran Kilgannon slotted a close range free as the game moved into the final quarter to put three goals in it, but MacCumhaill's responded with a 50 metre Sean Curran free to cut the deficit.

The Ballybofey men had a golden opportunity to eat futher into the Aodh Ruadh lead in the 47 minute when they won a penalty. Gavin Browne stood over the shot, but Shane McNulty got down to his left to make a fine reflex stop which went out for a 65 which Sean Curran was unable to convert.

Then in the 52nd minute came the score of the game, Ciaran Kilgannon caressing over a sumptuous free from 69 metres out. The sliotar still had plenty of air under it when it went over the black spot.

With five minutes left Ciaran Kilgannon added a more routine effort to take his personal tally to four points.

As the clock ticked into added time Chris Kilgannon put the cherry on the cake. He hit a shot in from the right, but it lacked power and with Declan Brown in confusing the issue Barry McGranaghan and his defence lost the dropping shot and it sailed to the back of the net.

Sean Curran did manage to point a free with the last puck of the game, but even then the Ballyshannon hurls almost managed to pull the sliotar down on its low trajectory over the bar.

That win pushes Aodh Ruadh up to fifth in the ten team division three table. Defensively Shane McNulty stood out, while Ciaran Kilgannon and Paul Hughes had a stranglehold around the middle of the pitch and up front the half forward line of Chris Kilgannon, Conor Gilmartin and Conor McNeely were exceptional. It was a tough evening at the office for MacCumhaill's, but Sean Curran worked hard for the cause the whole way through.

Vital Statistics
Teams
Aodh Ruadh
Ryan O'Brien; Thomas Anderson, Shane McNulty, Tommy Gillespie; Barry Farragher, Cian Dolan, Ciaran Rami; Ciaran Kilgannon (0-4, 3f), Paul Hughes; Conor Gilmartin (1-1), Christopher Kilgannon (1-4, 2f), Conor McNeely; Peter Horan (0-1), Danny Hayden, Rory Cullen.
Substitutes: Micky Bowring for Rory Cullen: Half time; Declan Browne for Danny Hayden: 51 minutes; Jack Matthews for Ciaran Rami: 54 minutes.
Yellow card: Cian Dolan: 40 minutes.
Wides First half: 5; Second half: 6; Total: 11.
MacCumhaill's
Barry McGranaghan; Kyle Tourish, Anthony Patton, Ollie McGroarty; Gavn Browne, Oliver McGroarty, Eoghan Wright; Barney McMenamin, Aaron McAuley (0-1f); Dean Hannigan, Sean Curran (0-2f), Philip Doherty; Conor Doherty, Andrew Burns (0-1), Eugene Merritt.
Substitute: TJ Aurelio for Conor Doherty: Half time.
Yellow card: Anthony Patton: 55 minutes.
Wides First half: 2; Second half: 3; Total: 5.
Referee: Aidan Ferguson (Erne Gaels)
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Last modified: Monday, 26 May 2014 at 10:51am