Glynn survive a serious test
Glynn-Barntown 2-12 Rathgarogue-Cushinstown 0-11
Glynn-Barntown gained the win that most observers would have expected in this Greenstar Under-21 hurling Premier championship preliminary round tie in Cushinstown on Tuesday, but not before the home side gave them a searching test on their big step up after losing last year's Roinn 1 decider to neighbours Rathnure.
A contribution of 2-6 from play by half-forward trio Matthew Joyce, Ben O'Shea and Fionn Cooney ultimately steered the Wexford District side to a place in the 'A' quarter-final, but they could only breathe a little easier after the latter's goal with eight minutes left when he flicked a long Rowan White free past Thomas Murphy.
Glynn-Barntown now await the winners of tonight's Oulart-The Ballagh versus Oylegate-Glenbrien clash in the last eight, while Rathgarogue-Cushinstown will take on the losers in the new Premier 'B' championship.
Both sides showed the kind of rustiness that one would expect from an opening round fixture, with the victors shooting 14 wides while the opposition had eight.
Another area for Glynn-Barntown to address will be their tendency to give away frees, with 18 conceded in various areas of the field while a mere eight were gained.
Matthew Joyce, a player with plenty of Senior experience, got them off to a bright start with the game's first three points inside eight minutes, two from play.
However, Rathgarogue-Cushinstown settled down after impressive wing-forward Jason Dunne dodged two attempted tackles and fired over from the left to open their account, and he went on to add another three points from play.
The New Ross District lads were back to within one point (4-3) by the 20-minute mark, and Dunne pointed again in between Glynn-Barntown scores from the Joyce cousins, Ciarán and Matthew (free).
The key moment before the break arrived in the 26th minute when speedy centre-forward Ben O'Shea - who had fired an earlier goal chance wide - broke away from a tussle for possession on the left and delivered a low shot which went off the hurl of netminder Thomas Murphy into the roof of the net.
Jack Brazzill added a peach of a point from a line ball to leave Glynn-Barntown 1-7 to 0-4 clear at the interval.
However, Rathgarogue-Cushinstown showed their more seasoned opponents would have to earn this win when Daire Bolger (two frees) and Jason Dunne picked off the first three points on the re-start.
Glynn-Barntown widened the gap to four twice, only for their rivals to reply, while Bill Joyce had a goal chance blocked before points from Matthew Joyce and Fionn Cooney made it 1-11 to 0-9 with ten minutes left.
Bolger pulled one back from a free, but less than 60 seconds later Cooney's deft flick diverted Rowan White's long free to the net and the game was as good as over.
Glynn-Barntown: Jamie O'Shea; Daniel O'Regan, Ger Dempsey, David Roche; Ciarán Joyce (0-1), Rowan White (capt., 0-1), Cormac Rowe; Frankie Hynes, James Stafford; Matthew Joyce (0-7, 3 frees), Ben O'Shea (1-0), Fionn Cooney (1-2); Bill Joyce, John Leacy, Jack Brazzill (0-1 line ball). Subs. - Richie Ryan for Leacy (23), Shane Doyle for O'Regan (53).
Rathgarogue-Cushinstown: Thomas Murphy; Liam Roche, Ricky McGrath, Ian Kennedy; Paddy Murphy, Bryan Cody, Aaron Ryan; Peter Aspel, Tadhg Cody (capt., 0-3, 2 frees); Daire Bolger (0-3 frees), Eric Cummins, Jason Dunne (0-5, 1 free); Evan Murphy, John O'Keeffe, Jack Murphy. Subs. - Shane O'Connor for O'Keeffe (44), Dylan Bookle for Cummins (54).
Referee: Philip Murphy (Faythe Harriers).