Bodyke 3-9 Corofin 0-16
Bodyke bridged a thirty year gap at Cusack Park on Friday evening when they captured the county under 21 C championship title at the expense of Corofin. The East Clare club recorded their only previous success in this championship in 1985 when they overcame the challenge of Crusheen.
A Bodyke victory didn’t appear likely at half time in Friday’s final when they trailed by nine points, 0-2 to 0-11. Corofin would not have been flattered with a greater lead at this stage such was the dominance they had enjoyed when playing with the aid of the breeze in the opening half.
On the resumption, Bodyke made a few positional switches which were to prove crucial. The switch of Patrick Walsh to midfield and the move of Paddy Fitzgerald to the full forward line were moves that caused a lot of problems for Corofin.
Seven minutes into the second half Corofin lost goalkeeper Liam Corbett with a hand injury and this also had a big bearing on the outcome. While Corbett’s replacement Jason McCarthy could not be blamed for the shots which beat him—in fact he made one excellent save—his experience and his puckouts were missed by Corofin in the remaining time.
Corbett suffered the injury as he made an excellent save from Fitzgerald who went for goal from a 20m free. A number of players got involved in an incident at this point and referee Neil O’Brien, after consulting with his umpires and one of his linesmen, sent off Adrian Healy (Bodyke) and Shay Malone (Corofin)
Corofin were still fancied to win when they led 0-12 to 0-4 two minutes into the final quarter. Two Bodyke goals in the space of three minutes, from Walsh and Fitzgerald, sparked off a great comeback which saw Walsh fire over the levelling point with seven minutes remaining.
The winners had edged a point in front though Fitzgerald when inter county footballer Jamie Malone won possession in his own half back line and set off on a run which sae him beat a number of Bodyke defenders before being penalised for handling the ball three times.
Four minutes of injury time were singalled and Corofin forced two ‘65’, the second of which was converted. A huge puckout from Seamus Quigley landed 30m from the Corofin goal where Paddy Fitzgerald won possession and raced through to fire home his side’s third goal and clinch victory.
**After the game Clare GAA public relations officer Sean O’Halloran who is also Bodyke club secretary, presented the cup to the joint winning captains Patrick Walsh and Paddy Fitzgerald after board vice chairman Joe Cooney had paid tribute to both teams.
Bodyke;–Seamus Quigley; William Fitzgerald, Eanna Doyle; Niall McGrath, Patrick Walsh (1-1), Liam O’Donnell; Patrick McNamara, David Melody; Liam Doyle, Patrick Fitzgerald (2-4), Evan Healy; Ian Murray (0-3), Adrian Healy;
Sub—Sean Browne for E. Healy
Corofin;–Liam Corbett; Paul Carkill, Diarmuid Cleary; Conor O’Loughlin, Cian O’Dea, Shay Malone; Eoin Davoran (0-1), Jack O’Dea; Eoin Clancy, Declan Stack (0-11), David Corbett; Michael Kelly (0-1), Jamie Malone (0-2)
Sub—Jason McCarthy for Corbett (inj);
Referee—Neil O’Brien, O’C. Mills;
By Seamus Hayes