O'Neill's goal gives Duffry the edge over Geraldines
ALAN O'NEILL grabbed the all-important 50th-minute goal which helped Duffry Rovers to battle their way to two more crucial points at the expense of Geraldine O'Hanrahans in The Courtyard Ferns Intermediate hurling championship Group A game played in heavy rain at St. Patrick's Park, Enniscorthy, on Sunday last.
O'Neill carried the main threat up front for his side all evening, but during the opening 30 minutes his shooting let him down despite constantly getting on the ball. But when it mattered most he found the range with a delightful goal that sealed the points for his side.
Geraldine O'Hanrahan's were a much-changed 15 from their previous outing, with the result that they never showed the teamwork that was prevalent on that occasion. Indeed, such was their weakness up front that they were lucky not to have suffered a heavier defeat as they could only muster three second-half points.
Very little separated the sides through the opening 30 minutes as both struggled for scores. Duffry Rovers led by 0-2 to nil after six minutes through points from Alan O'Neill and a Brian Clince free. The Barrowsiders responded with three unanswered points from Mark Rellis, Eoin Kelly and Jimmy Goggins before the end of the opening quarter.
The Ross side finished the half strongly, adding points through Matt Crowdle, Ronan Carroll and Rellis to lead by 0-6 to 0-4 at the interval, with Matthew O'Connor and Brian Clince keeping their opponents in touch.
Geraldine O'Hanrahans added three quick second-half points through Rellis, Crowdle and a Goggins free, before the Duffry responded via Alan O'Neill and Brian Clince. Ten minutes from the end came O'Neill's goal after centre-forward Eamonn Doyle had split the defence with a fine run before laying off to the scorer who finished splendidly from 14 metres to ensure the points for his side.
Duffry Rovers: Leigh Kearney; Matthew Flynn-O'Connor, Thomas Clince, Ted O'Brien; James Nolan, Ciarán Pender, Patrick Nolan; Brian Clince (0-4 frees), Aidan Byrne; Matthew O'Connor (0-1), Eamonn Doyle (0-1), Stephen Watchorn; Micheál Doyle, Alan O'Neill (1-4), Ger Coleman.
Geraldine O'Hanrahans: Mark Purcell; James Ryan, John Donovan, Niall Hickey; Conor Cleere, Liam Walsh, Robbie Donovan; Jimmy Goggins (0-2 frees), Ronan Carroll (0-1); Danny Conway, Eoin Bailey; Matt Crowdle (0-2), Mark Rellis (0-3), Eoin Kelly (0-1). Sub. - David Crowdle for Conway.
Referee: Dickie Murphy (Rapparees).