A better-balanced Moycarkey-Borris side had too much in hand for a game Kiladangan team when the sides met in an entertaining Tipperary Water County Minor A Hurling Championship semi-final played at a sunny Borrisoleigh on Saturday.
Tipperary Water County Minor A
Hurling Championship Semi-Final
Moycarkey-Borris 3-17 Kiladangan 3-10
Blessed with all round strength and resistance the skilful Moycarkey side overcome a troublesome period mid-way through the first half before they consolidated their position and eased into the final.
Kiladangan played with the breeze in the opening half, but it was Moycarkey who displayed the more composure as Rhys Shelly, Jack fallon, Max Hackett and Jack Morrissey had begun to set the tone. Two points by Rhys Shelly and Max Hackett was the reward which could have been improved upon, but the wide count reached four in the first eleven minutes.
Points by John McGrath and Bryan McLoughney had Kiladangan level by the 13th minute, but a quick response by Moycarkey led to a goal. The move began with a Rhys Shelly run down the left wing. He had the Kiladangan defence in trouble and switched play across the face of Paul Seymour’s goal where an unmarked Kyle Shelly had an easy tap in.
Two minutes later Kiladangan’s attempt to get back into the game was profitable when Sean Hayes struck a great goal.
Both sides then swapped scores before Bryan McLoughney found the room to edge Kiladangan in front (1-4 to 1-3) after nineteen minutes. Kiladangan had recovered to gain a deserved lead when their defence slowly came to terms with the Moycarkey threat.
But in the next two minutes the game turned - Kyle Shelly levelled matters followed by the side’s second goal when a good delivery by the excellent Max Hackett reached Darren Flood who caught a high ball outside the Kiladangan thirteen-metre line before linking up with an unmarked Rhys Shelly who goaled from close range.
Bryan McLoughney replied from play only to see Darren Flood do likewise before a McLoughney scored another free. Max Hackett caught the resulting puck-out before soloing past the Kiladangan defence and scoring with class. A sixty-five metre free by McLoughney kept Kiladangan in the hunt, but centre-forward Bill Maher had the final score of the half and Moycarkey-Borris led 2-7 to 1-7 at the break.
The players had just returned to their positions for the second half when Kiladangan were back level thanks to a Bryan McLoughney goal. That score set the pulses racing, but Moycarkey used their experience of last year’s campaign (when they reached the final) to set about consolidating their potential.
Winning many of their own puck-outs they began to claw out a lead and struck four unanswered points including three long-range frees from the very accurate Jack Fallon.
In the 39th minute Bryan McLoughney pointed a free only to see a similar reply from Fallon. Substitute Aidan Ryan kept Kiladangan in the hunt with a point, but that score was matched by a Kyle Shelly free after a foul on Darren Flood.
Shane Gleeson’s ninety-metre free heightened Kiladangan’s cause, but Kyle Shelly moved Moycarkey four in front before the Mid champions stretched their lead to five by the 53rd minute after midfielder Jack Morrissey grabbed a point to make it 2-15 to 2-10.
But Kiladangan hauled back the deficit with a goal from Bryan McLoughney which left the game on a knife edge with five minutes remaining.
However a master point by Max Hackett restored the Mid side’s grip on proceedings and in the 56th minute Darren Flood broke free to strike his team’s third goal from close range.
Despite Kiladangan striving to get back in contention the Moycarkey lads justified their favouritism with a late point through Jack Fallon whose five long-range fees in the second half made all the difference.
Moycarkey-Borris: Ciaran Kirwin, Kyle Ryan, John Kirwan, Peter Melbourne, Tom Ryan, Kevin Hayes, Rory Darmody, Max Hackett (0-2), Jack Morrissey (0-1), Jack Fallon (0-6, 0-5 frees), Bill Maher (0-1), Rhys Shelly (1-1), James Dillon, Darren Flood (1-1), Kyle Shelly (1-5, 0-3 frees).
Kiladangan: Paul Seymour, John O’Meara, Cathal Ryan, DJ McGrath, Conor Culhane, Darragh Flannery, Stephen Mulvihill, John McGrath (0-1), Matthew Cleary, Billy McGrath, Sean Hayes (1-0), Shane Gleeson (0-2, 0-1 frees), Conor Byrne, Bryan McLoughney (2-6, 0-4 frees), Eoin McGrath. Subs: Daire Ryan for B McGrath (41st), Aidan Ryan (0-1) for Mulvihill (46th).
Referee: Paul Guinan (Killenaule).