Martin's edge a very tight battle

BRENDAN FURLONG in Taghmon

ST. MARTIN'S GLYNN-BARNTOWN

1-10 1-8

THIS WAS an excellent clash as St. Martin's edged to a narrow two-point victory over Glynn-Barntown in the Juvenile hurling Division 1 championship final at Taghmon.

St. Martin's had to give everything in the second 30 minutes to enable them withstand a Glynn-Barntown surge that left the end result on a knife edge to the final whistle. It was a game that produced some excellent individual displays on both sides, but what caught the eye most was the team effort that was evident throughout.

In the end it was St. Martin's ability in attack to pick off some excellent scores from play that helped them to go on to a hard-earned victory over a gallant Glynn-Barntown side who gave their all throughout, particularly in the second-half when they hauled themselves back into a winning position.

Glynn-Barntown opened the game in impressive fashion, moving into a 0-4 to 0-1 lead by the tenth minute. After Joe Coleman had opened the scoring with a point for St. Martin's, Glynn-Barntown went on to strike four unanswered points through Aaron Kehoe (two, one free, with his second effort from play off the sideline being one of the scores of the game), while both Ian Moran and Ben O'Shea also got in on the scoring act.

With Joe Coleman striking over two points, as Darragh Kenny and Darragh Rossiter added scores in between, St. Martin's edged back in front going in at the interval (0-6 to 0-4), their opponents having failed to score from the tenth minute onwards.

Within one minute of the re-start, Joe Coleman found the net from a Jake Firman cross, and when the same player made it 1-7 to 0-4 after 37 minutes it was going to take a mammoth effort from Glynn-Barntown to get back into the game.

Four minutes later Glynn-Barntown were awarded a semi-penalty that David Clarke blasted to the net, and when the impressive Matthew Joyce followed with a point, just two points (1-7 to 1-5) separated the sides. St. Martin's added a point through Jake Firman, but Aaron Kehoe followed with two pointed frees to leave the minimum separating the sides (1-8 to 1-7) with eleven minutes remaining.

In a tension-packed closing ten minutes, Firman increased his side's lead, but Aaron Kehoe fired over a huge point off the sideline to once again leave the minimum separating the sides with three minutes remaining. As both sides strove for that crucial score, Darragh Kenny found the range to ensure the title went down Piercestown way.

St. Martin's: Dylan Byrne; Jack Stafford, Joe O'Connor, Conor Firman; Tony Kelly (capt.), Aaron Maddock, Martin Whelan; Harry O'Connor, Johnny Hamilton; Jake Firman (0-3), Darragh Rossiter (0-1), Darren Codd; Michael Coleman, Joe Coleman (1-4, 0-1 free, 0-1 '65), Darragh Kenny (0-2). Subs. - Maurice Walsh, Brad Cohen, Patrick Hamilton, Nicky Greene, Conor Glynn, Barry Cronin, C. Ryan, A. Murphy, Stephen Roche, Paddo Redmond.

Glynn-Barntown: Adam Kennedy; Stephen Lyne, Kevin Mahoney, David Clarke (1-0 free); Dylan Roche, Matthew Joyce (0-1), Matt Doyle; Rowan White, Conor Fenlon; Frank Hynes, James Stafford, Ben O'Shea (0-1); Luke Rafter, Ian Moran (0-1), Aaron Kehoe (0-5, 3 frees). Subs. - Fionn Cooney for Doyle, Cillian Joyce for Hynes, also Johnny Crean, Daire MacCormack, Ciarán Joyce, Bill Joyce, Jack Brazzill, Ger Dempsey, Cormac Rowe, Dylan Lyne, Jamie O'Shea.

Referee: Pat Kehoe (Rathgarogue-Cushinstown).

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