Shanballymore 3-11 Glanworth 1-10.
Saturday night it was the clash of the 2015 north Cork junior A and junior b hurling champions when we welcomed Glanworth to Shanballymore for our forth game in the div 1 hurling league.
With Glanworth claiming the major hurling title in Avondhu last year when they defeated Clyda to win a tough junior A hurling championship we knew this would be a stern test for us as Glanworth are always tough opponents in hurling. We went into the game missing a few of our regular starter’s with Sean Lynch, Eoin O’Regan, Padraig Fitzgerald, Jerome Fitzgerald, Jonathan Dennehy and Haulie Burke all missing for various reasons.
Like wise Glanworth were missing a few very good hurlers who will make them stronger when they return but both teams still served up a excellent hour of fast skillful hurling. The first half was pretty close with both teams evenly matched and both defences on top. We were first to score when Darren Roche placed Kenneth Barry for a well taken point but Glanworth answered with a point of their own.
Paul Burke had a great close range point a minute later before Brian O’Reilly put over a long range effort from the wing to see us lead by two points after ten minutes. Glanworth came more into the match and had the game level with the next two scores and they took the lead with a pointed free on the 20 minute mark. Brian O’Reilly was on hand to draw us level again with a close range point after a great pass from Rob McHugh and we took the lead again when Eamonn Fitzgerald set up Paul Burke who’s shot was well saved by the Glanworth keeper but the in rushing Kenneth Barry was on hand the knock the ball into the net from close range. This gave us a three point lead and a cushion heading into half time and our next point came from the hard working midfielder Darren Roche who pointed from the 45 yard line.
Glanworth answered with a free but from the puck out Colman O’Reilly gained possession and was fouled which Jamie Sheedy slotted over. With the half nearly up Glanworth had their sixth point to come with three points again but thankfully Brian O’Reilly was on hand to score a beautiful point from the wing and see us lead at half time 1-7 to 0-6.
The second half was very lively with some well taken points from both teams but we had some outstanding displays in defence from Eoin McHugh in full back and Brian Sheedy in center back, around them Richard Burke and Alan Sheedy had to be at their best with the two fast Glanworth corner forwards constantly moving. Stephen Donegan made an outstanding save in the first half when the Glanworth forward was one on one and Stevie is certainly looking in top form over the last few games in the league.
Rob McHugh, James Hayes and our two midfielders Vincent Burke and Darren Roche put in a fierce amount of work over the hour and covered a lot of ground while also playing some great hurling. Jamie Sheedy got us going with the scoring in the second half with two lovely points from a free and play but Glanworth kept in touch with a few of their own. Brian O’Reilly had another beauty from distance after 15 minutes and the the real turning point came when a great clearance out of defence was broken down by full forward Mick O’Donovan who placed a great pass to Paul Burke who goaled from a tight angle to give us some breathing space and a good lead heading into the last ten minutes.
Glanworth to their credit had two well taken points to close the gap again but we surged ahead again when a mix up in the Glanworth defence saw Paul Burke disposed the defender and the ball broke to Kenneth Barry inside the six yard box and he was on hand to goal from close range. With the game heading towards full time Glanworth had their only goal of the game when a shot from distance deceived everyone and ended up in the net. We had the last score of the game when the excellent Brian O’Reilly was set free down the wing by Alan Sheedy and Brian split the posts to finish off the game and see us win by seven points.
Team: Stephen Donegan, Richard Burke, Eoin McHugh, Alan Sheedy, James Hayes, Brian Sheedy, Robert McHugh, Darren Roche(0-1,) Kenneth Barry(2-1), Jamie Sheedy(0-3), Brian O’Reilly(0-5), Colman O’Reilly, Paul Burke(1-1), Eamonn Fitzgerald, Vincent Burke, Subs: Mick O’Donovan for Eamon Fitzgerald inj, Dave Twomey for Paul Burke, Shaun Cronin for Kenneth Barry, Jerome Fitzgerald, Declan Fitzgibbon.