Sixmilebridge 4-18 Ogonnelloe 3-9
A 12-point bloodless victory for Sixmilebridge left their supporters wondering why they hadn’t displayed the same clinical finishing in their earlier group games, which could have guaranteed them at least a play-off for the quarter-finals.
Broadford’s eight-point victory over Ballyea dashed any remaining hopes Sixmilebridge entertained of reaching the knockout stages as St Joseph’s Doora-Barefield and Broadford qualified from Group Four.
Despite the absence of Clare veteran attacker Niall Gilligan and the option of using some of their minors who have qualified for the county final next weekend, the ’Bridge proved far too strong for a depleted Ogonnelloe outfit who remain pointless after four games.
While Sixmilebridge always looked the more likely winners, they were a little flattered by their final tally, which was greatly augmented by Ogonnelloe’s tendency to concede far too many soft frees, which were punished by the impressive Caimin Morey, who finished with 1-10, 1-9 of which came from placed balls.
Aided by a deceptively stiff breeze, Ogonnelloe actually led by four points to one after five minutes until Sixmilebridge midfielder Mark Culbert got in behind the Ogonnelloe defence and rattled the net.
The sides were still level in the 15th minute when a powerful free from Peter O’Brien was deflected over the bar after his colleague Eoin Sheedy was fouled going through for a goal.
Inspired by Peter O’Brien, who excelled throughout at centre-back, Michael Costelloe, Ozar McMahon and Michael Noel Bugler, Ogonnelloe played well for spells in the opening half.
An opportunist Barry Kiely goal in the 21st minute put Ogonnelloe 1-7 to 1-3 in front until four unanswered points from Caimin Morey (2), Eoin Quinn and Mark Culbert left the sides deadlocked with 1-7 apiece at the break.
Five minutes into the second half, the hard-working John McKenna grabbed a long delivery from Peter O’Brien and rattled the net to put Ogonnelloe a point in front before Caimin Morey converted a great long-range free inside his own half.
Peter O’Brien had to be alert to block a goal attempt from Declan Morey at the expense of a 65 pointed by Morey.
The turning point came in the 42nd minute when Morey was fouled going through and he rifled the resulting 21-yard free to the roof of the net. Six minutes later Declan Morey crowned a great 40 metre solo run from the left wing by blasting the ball to the net following a great pass from Mark Culbert to earn Sixmilebridge a comprehensive 3-15 to 2-9 advantage.
Ogonnelloe battled to get back in touch but they found it hard to breach the ’Bridge defence where John Reddan, Tadgh Keogh and Wayne Kennedy defended well.
’Bridge midfielder Mark Culbert continued to distribute some inch-perfect passes for his forward colleagues up front.
The rest of the game was academic as Ogonnelloe continued to give away frees and at the other end the impressive John McKenna grabbed another goal five minutes from the end to take the bare look off the scoreboard.
Sixmilebridge: Derek Fahy; Michael Liddane, Tadhg Keogh, Wayne Kennedy; Barry O’Connor, John Reddan, Paudie Fitzpatrick; Mark Culbert, Tommy Morey; Eoin Quinn, Brian Culbert, Camin Morey; David O’Connor, Declan Morey, John Fennessy.
Subs: Johnathan Downes, 36 mins, for Tommy Morey.
Scorers: Camin Morey (1-10, 1-7 frees, two 65s); Declan Morey (1-2); Mark Culbert (1-); David O’Connor (0-2); Eoin Quinn, (0-1); John Fennessy (0-1).
Frees: 19; Wides: 12; 65s: 2
“We are very disappointed about not reaching the hurling championship quarter-finals but we only have ourselves to blame.” Sixmilebridge manager, Christy Chaplin
Ogonnelloe: Tomas McKenna; Henry Mooney, Michael Costelloe, Eogahan Collins; John O’Brien, Peter O’Brien, Ozar McMahon; Michael Noel Bugler, Michael O’Brien; Pat Barton, Eoin Sheedy, Tomas Condon; Barry Gibbons, Barry Kiely, Jason Kirby.
Subs: John McKenna three mins, blood sub for Michael O’Brien; Michael O’Brien, 11 mins, for Jason Kirby; Michael Mooney, 50 mins, for Henry Mooney.
Scorers: John McKenna (2-4); Barry Kiely (1-1); Peter O’Brien (0-3, two frees and one 65); Tom Condon (0-1).
Frees: 12; Wides: 6; 65s: 2
Yellow card: Eoghan Collins 53 mins.
“We gave away too many frees, which proved costly and we also gave away possession too easily when the game was close.” Ogonnolloe manager, Michael Sheedy.
Referee: Fergie McDonagh, Doora-Barefield