DIVISION 1 FOOTBALLRathnew constituted a formidable opposition for our lads in their recent home game in Div 1 of the Arklow Bay Hotel Football League.One would expect that there was a degree of trepidation in the locals camp at the prospect of taking on such doughty opponents.If, indeed, there had been it was dissipated within 3 minutes with a morale-boosting score from Daniel Woods.Daniel fielded a great ball 50 m. out near the sideline and deftly wove his way through a weft of Rathnew defenders to send the ball unerringly between the posts from 30m.This was followed by 2 unanswered points for Eire Og, one from play by Daniel Keane and another from a 45 from Daniel Woods.From that point the Greystones players grew in stature and dominated matters for the remainder of the half.They had the lions share of possession and the defence, marshalled by Darren Hayden and county captain Chester Kelly, was parsimonious in its concession of scores so it was somewhat of a disappointment that we were only 7points to 2 ahead at the break.Then – shades of the championship play-off game between the teams in Aughrim in 2015 Rathnew upped their game in the 2ndhalf and began to win the battle in the middle 3rd.As a result their forwards were now receiving a steady supply of ball which they duly used to good effect.Simultaneously Eire Ogs scoring dried to a trickle so the Clocha Liatha lead was being relentlessly and ominously eroded to the point that on the 58thminute the locals were hanging on by their fingernails to a 1 point advantage.Their tenuous hold on the game was smashed by a James Stafford goal.
DIVISION 3. The importance of having a junior team to act as a conduit of experience for younger players on their way to senior status cannot be overemphasised.Thankfully we have such a team in Div. 3 of the county league.Its campaign to date has been a veritable rollercoaster with its peaks and troughs.In the context individual outcomes are not hugely important, rather it is that the team be competitive and that playing opportunities be afforded to peripheral players.The team is managed by Eddie Davis who would love to see more support on the sideline.
Goals, it is said, win matches but they also can give a false picture of the balance of play in a match.Thus Eire Ogs 2-10 to 0-9 defeat to Knockananna in the Murphys Hotel (Tinahely) League would tend to suggest that the game was a very one-sided contest which in effect is far from the truth.The hosts had hardly settled into any degree of readiness when they found themselves 1-2 behind.On the 3rdminute the Greystones backs were caught napping and they allowed the visitors full-forward the luxury of a 1-on-1 with goalie Dermot Blake.Goal!To our chagrin the opposition quickly added 2 more points.A hold was put on the slide when reliable free-taker Willie OHagan slotted over a 30m. free.This was followed by 2 points from roaming corner-forwards James Cranley and Deccie Hogan.The visitors then took over and added 3 further points before the break leaving them 1-5 to 0-3 in front at half-time.
Things were looking up for Eire Ogwhen James Cranley added a point early on in the 2ndperiod but unfortunately any hopes of a Clocha Liatha victory were dashed shortly after by a Knockananna goal from a penalty.
IOMAINTAs Brendan Cuddihy said at the Dinner Dance on Saturday night hurling is a delicate plant struggling to retain its all too tenuous hold on the stony soil of Wicklow and needs tender loving care and careful cultivation. Eire Og Na Clocha Liatha and Kilcoole are doing their bit by combining forces to form viable underage 15-a-side teams under the umbrella of the North District Gaels (NDG).
U-17NDG and Avondale Rocks locked horns in Kilcoole on Monday evening in the league and the contest ended on the score NDG 3-11 (20) , Avondale Rocks 2-12 (18).What a game! 28 scores in 60 minutes with the lead changing hands in a pendulumic rhythmover the hour.On-the-edge-of-the-seat excitement which reached a climax in injury time!NDG were a point down at the end of the hour and defeat seemed inevitable but the Gaels fought on with a never say die spirit.Their persistence paid off and they claimed victory with an opportunist goal as the referee drew his breath to blow for full-time. The team played most of the 2nd half with only 14 players.
Special mention for Brian Shortt who defended heroically throughout, to Shaun Cranley, who played the game having only at 5.30 come off the boat from England where he had won a soccer tournament in Blackpool at the weekend, to wing forward Joe Prendergast (aged 13) who excelled and contributed 2 fabulous points and to corner forward Luke Dorgan (from our U15s) who scored all of our 3 goals in the second half, but it was never truer to say that each and every one of the players put in 100% throughout.Squad : Neil Browne, Shane Ryan, Glen Ryder, Eoin Dorgan, Joe Prendergast, Shaun Cranley, Luke Dorgan, Cillian Keane (allEire Og Greystones GAA) Joe McDonald (Newtown), Oisin Curry, Brian Shortt, Marwan Machalaani, Glen Dunne, Leo Hanney, Thomas Moorehouse, Fionn Mansfield (allKilcoole GAA). Well done also to Avondale Rocks who will feel they deserved a little more for the skill and effort they put in.
Under 15 Hurling Result Nth District Gaels 2-11 Bray Emmets 4-08. Our first outing of the year which took placeon Wednesday evening resulted in a narrow 1 goal defeat to Bray Emmets in Bray. It was a dressing room of mixed feelings after the final whistle. The boys played their hearts out for the hour and displayed many excellent skills of the game of hurling, but they also knew that victory was so close and but for a bit of bad fortune in front of goal, the 1 goal defeat could easily have been a 1 goal win. There were some fabulous scores from both sides on the night and some our defending, hassling and harrying was excellent. Special mention to U13, Fintan Potts who agreed to go in goals for us and made some great saves in the 2ndhalf to keep us in the game. Squad : Fintan Potts, Thade Shanahan, Colm Shortt, Cillian Keane, Neil Browne, Eoin Byrne, Ciaran Ovenden (Under 13), Joe Prendergast, TJ Kehoe, Daniel Healy, Luke Dorgan, Oisin Shanahan (U13), Fionn Mansfield, Bill O Brien & Fionn Melia. Thanks to Bray Emmets for a fantastic sporting game and to referee Ciaran Manley who was excellent.