Kilrush see off Naomh Eanna to claim Junior 'B' crown
Kilrush completed a historic double by adding the Gorey District Junior B football title to the hurling one they picked up a few weeks ago by defeating Naomh Eanna in Craanford on Friday evening last.
Kilrush-Ask 2-08 Naomh Eanna 1-09
They were made to fight hard by a Gorey Town side who will collectively hurt over this one, feeling it might have slipped away from them despite having the bulk of the chances. That fact will likely make the win all the sweeter for a Kilrush side who were well organised and committed in defence and were clinical and collected in front of the posts.
Neither side was inhibited by the spilling rain in the early stages as scores flowed easily. Indeed, it was Naomh Eanna who adapted to the conditions quickest - racing into a 1-4 to 1-0 lead after eight minutes.
Their advantage was achieved even though their opponents hit the net first. Less than two minutes were on the clock when Michael Molloy pointed to put Gorey ahead but Kilrush responded when David Owens - not known for his height - reached above his marker to flick Ger Kinsella's hopefully ball into the net.
Niall Kirwan had pointed a minute after the set-back and his side soon hit the front when Molloy collected the ball just inside the 45, powered in 20 metres and struck an unstoppable shot to the net off the underside of Alan Owens' crossbar.
Both midfielders, Darragh Highes and Stephen Byrne, followed with points before Owens and Molloy traded overs to leave the score at 1-5 to 1-1 after twelve minutes. Those eight scores in the first quarter were followed by only twelve more in the rest of the game as conditions deteriorated.
Hughes pointed in the nineteenth minute to increase the Naomh Eanna lead to five but overs from Jamie Murphy and Fionn Fortune made it 1-6 to 1-3 at the interval.
Billy Nolan came on at half-time for Kilrush and would be heavily involved but it was Kinsella who punched to the net when Murphy's ball into the goalmouth was spilled in the 32nd minute.
Nolan put Kilrush ahead only for Molloy to respond in the 41st minute (1-7 to 2-4).
The victors scored the next four points, with Owens, Nolan, Paul Browne and Eoin Carton on target, to take a 2-8 to 1-7 lead with six minutes left and while Gorey piled on the pressure, with Kirwan and Alan Molloy pointing, they couldn't find the goal they needed as Kilrush clung to victory.
Kilrush-Askamore: Alan Owens; Brian Buttle, Tomas Kenny, Darragh Power; Sean Foley, Eoin Carton (0-1), Paul Browne (0-1); James Quinn, John Byrne (capt); Jack Quinn, Fionn Fortune (0-1), Jamie Murphy (0-1); David Owens (1-2, 0-1 free), John Donohoe, Ger Kinsella (1-0). Sub. - Billy Nolan (0-2) for Donohoe (31).
Naomh Eanna: Sean Finn; Darren Cullen, Pat Cullen (capt), Seamus O'Donnell; John Lillis, Ross Murphy, Gary Molloy; Stephen Byrne (0-1), Darragh Hughes (0-2); Kevin Harrington, Michael Molloy (1-3, 0-1 free), John O'Connor; Eoin McGuckin, Niall Kirwan (0-2), Alan Molloy (0-1 free). Subs. David Moore for O'Connor (41), Daniel Sunderland for D. Cullen (55).
Referee: Eddie O'Sullivan (Kilanerin)