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Kilmurry stutter to unconvincing victory

Kilmurry-Ibrickane  0-7   Liscannor  0-3
AN unconvincing four-point victory over Liscannor isn’t what you would expect from reigning two-in-a-row senior football champions, Kilmurry-Ibrickane.

Shane Hickey was excellent in defence.The title-holders stuttered to their second successive win in the championship and remain unbeaten, but this display was well below what they are capable of producing.
However, this victory puts them in the driving seat for a place in the knock-out stages that they can seal with a draw in their next outing against St Joseph’s, Miltown.
Although Liscannor are always a difficult side to beat, Kilmurry will be concerned about their failure to put the game beyond their reach after creating plenty of scoring chances.
Their cause wasn’t helped by two disallowed goals and 11 wides compared to Liscannor’s six. The first goal was ruled out when centre-back Shane Hickey handpassed a defence splitting pass from Mark McCarthy to the net at the end of a great forward movement in the 21st minute.
Six minutes into the second half, umpires left the green flag on the ground after Mark McCarthy was ruled to be inside the square when he connected with Michael O’Dwyer’s cross from the right corner.
Battling Liscannor were left to rue their inability to convert a number of opportunities which should have earned them a three points to nil advantage after five minutes. The North Clare side won plenty of possession but their inability to translate this into scores continues to haunt them.
None of their starting front six managed to hit the target and they sorely missed the services of injured centre-forward Johnny Considine and utility forward Johnny Guerin.
While Kilmurry Ibrickane couldn’t call on the services of Vinny Talty, Johnny Daly, Peter O’Dwyer or Stephen Moloney for their starting line up, they are blessed with an abundance of talent compared to their opponents who are forced to draw from a very small pool of players.
The marksmanship on both sides was poor. Kilmurry could only manage one point from Michael O’Dwyer in the second period, which was a very paltry return for the county kingpins. It took Liscannor 25 minutes to open their account in the opening period thanks to a great point from impressive midfielder Brian Considine.
Liscannor centre-back Ronan Slattery followed up with a great long-range point just before the break to leave his side trailing 0-6 to 0-2 at the interval.
Kilmurry looked more dangerous in attack and did seem more likely to score a goal.
Odran O’Dwyer converted a free to open their account and three unanswered points from Michael O’Dwyer, Shane Hickey and another O’Dwyer free earned them a 0-4 to 0-0 advantage after 18 minutes.
Liscannor found it extremely difficult to breach the winner’s watertight rearguard where Shane Hickey, Declan Callinan and Martin McMahon excelled in their half-back line. Paul O’Connor and Enda Coughlan worked hard in midfield while Michael O’Dwyer, Mark McCarthy and Noel Downes looked dangerous when they won possession.
David McDonagh and Michael Foley defended well while Ronan Slattery made several good runs from centre-back and generally linked up well with the hard working Brian Considine and Alan Flaherty in midfield.
Liscannor needed a goal to ignite their challenge in the second half. However, 23 minutes of the second period had elapsed when Brian Considine converted a free to return the deficit to four following a Michael O’Dwyer point from play in the 14th minute. Kilmurry spurned several chances in the final quarter to extend their lead.
Kilmurry Ibrickane: Peter O’Dwyer; Darren Hickey, Mark Killeen, Brendan Moloney; Martin McMahon, Shane Hickey, Declan Callinan; Paul O’Connor, Enda Coughlan; Evan Talty, Michael Hogan, Michael O’Dwyer; Mark McCarthy, Odhran O’Dwyer, Noel Downes.
Subs: Ian McInerney (blood 40 mins) for Mark Killeen; Ian McInerney (58 mins) for Odran O’Dwyer.
Scorers: Odran O’Dwyer (0-3, all frees), Michael O’Dwyer (0-2), Mark McCarthy (0-1), Shane Hickey (0-1).
Frees: 21; Wides: 11; 45s: 0.
Yellow cards: Martin McMahon, Odhran O’Dwyer.
“Kilmurry only scored one point in the second half, which is poor shooting. Kilmurry should have kicked on when we went four points in front but we were inclined at times to shoot from distance. The team has spent the last eight weeks on physical training with virtually no ball work. Seán Dempsey only came in as coach two weeks ago. [They] must improve their shooting and achieve a better all round performance to try and beat St Joseph’s Miltown.”
Kilmurry Ibrickane manager, Martin Keavey.
Liscannor: Noel Kilmartin; Shane Canavan, David McDonagh, Michael Foley; Robert Lucas, Ronan Slattery, Dara Blake; Brian Considine, Alan Flaherty; Joe Considine, Thomas McDonagh, Gerard Considine; Alan Clohessy, Kieran Considine, Niall Considine.
Subs: Declan Fawl (21 mins) for Thomas McDonagh; David Commane (55 mins) for Dara Blake.
Scorers: Brian Considine (0-2, one free), Ronan Slattery (0-1).
Frees: 22; Wides: 6, 45s: 0.
Yellow card: Niall Considine 46 mins.
“Liscannor missed a few point-scoring chances in the opening minutes which seemed to unsettle the team a bit. The team competed very well and the possession stakes were very even but couldn’t convert this into scores. At times, when scoring chances were made, the wrong option was taken. Liscannor are still in the hunt for a place in the knock-out stages. This group is wide open and this defeat means the team must beat Kilkee in their next game.”
Liscannor selector, John Torpey.
Referee: Kevin Walsh (Wolfe Tones).

Miltown, St Joseph’s  2-11   St Senan’s, Kilkee  1-9
THE personnel may be largely the same as it has been for a few years but the personality of this Miltown team has altered markedly.
Michael Barry was in superb form for Miltown.These days when the tide goes against them, the Cusack Cup holders don’t hang the head and let it get to them. Clearly the resolve of this team has hardened significantly. Proof of this was easily located in Doonbeg last Sunday evening.
Two weeks after winning their first Cusack Cup since 1995, Miltown were 0-6 to 0-0 down 20 minutes into their next game. Kilkee were buzzing as Michael O’Shea scored five of those points from frees and play. Micheál Keane had notched his side’s opening score.
Miltown didn’t manage a shot, into the wind, until the 18th minute, when Gary Egan, who worked exceptionally hard at centre-forward, fired wide. Miltown had Eoin Curtin deployed outfield at this stage and their long ball tactic, into Michael Barry, wasn’t working as Darragh Kelly picked up plenty of possession at full-back.
Everything changed though in the twentieth minute when Enda O’Gorman surged forward and banged a low ball in towards the square from the right hand side. Michael Barry diverted the ball beyond Kevin Harte and Miltown were up and running. By half-time they had drawn level with Eoin Curtin, Micheál Malone and Seán Meade, with a superb point, nabbing crucial scores.
After Michael Barry won the throw in, Curtin put Miltown 1-4 to 0-6 up and they looked ready to pull away.
Kilkee however were a changed team, in terms of their fitness and attitude from that hammered by Kilmurry Ibrickane last June and inside a minute they were back in front.
A left footed Michael O’Shea goal, after Chris Williamson, Micheál Keane and Gearóid Lynch linked up revived Kilkee, who added a Lynch point half a minute later.
So just three minutes into the second half Kilkee were 1-7 to 1-4 ahead. For the second time in Doonbeg last Sunday evening, Miltown had to show what they were made of. They did and outscored Kilkee 1-7 to 0-2 in the remaining 27 minutes.
Kilkee aided them however within 30 seconds when a loose cross field hand pass, was intercepted by Barry, who blasted to the net, levelling the scores.
Four minutes later Barry capitalised on a break to kick Miltown 2-5 to 1-7 ahead.  Dessie Molohan was introduced and landed two critical Miltown points, while he was also yellow carded, from a distance of 100 yards, by Michael Rock, who had played advantage to Kilkee before booking the Miltown postman.
Another substitute, Kilkee’s Christy Kirwan, also kicked two points but Eoin Curtin, Barry and Gary Egan closed out the game for the winners.
Miltown now play Kilmurry Ibrickane and must win to have a chance of making the last eight. A month ago nobody would have given them any chance of beating their neighbours. That perception has changed radically however.
Kilkee meanwhile must beat Liscannor and hope that Kilmurry beat Miltown well to retain a faint hope of making the last eight on scoring difference.
Barry, John Meade, who played very well when moved from midfield to full-forward, Eoin Curtin and Gary Egan excelled for Miltown, while Brian Clancy, Chris Williamson and Michael O’Shea did their best for Kilkee, who have improved significantly under Aidan O’Keeffe.
Miltown: Conor O’Loughlin; Enda Malone, Graham Kelly, David Cleary; Gearóid Curtin, Gordon Kelly, Enda O’Gorman; Seán Meade, John Meade; Kevin Keavey, Gary Egan, Micheál Malone; Joe Curtin, Michael Barry, Eoin Curtin.
Subs: Dessie Molohan for Joe Curtin, Seánie Malone for Micheál Malone, Cathal Lafferty for Enda O’Gorman, Michael Hehir for Kevin Keavey.
Scorers: Michael Barry (2-2), Eoin Curtin (0-4, 0-3f), Dessie Molohan (0-2), Micheál Malone, Seán Meade, Gary Egan (0-1 each).
Frees won: 13; wides: 9; 45s: 1
Yellow cards:
Seán Meade, Kevin Keavey, Enda O’Gorman, Dessie Molohan, Seánie Malone.
Kilkee: Kevin Harte; Brendan Smyth, Darragh Kelly, Darren Owens; Brian Clancy, Thomas Galvin, Senan Larkin; Kevin Larkin, Chris Williamson; Micheál Keane, Gearóid Lynch, David Russell; Conor King, Michael O’Shea, Barry Harte.
Subs: Christy Kirwan for Senan Larkin, Derek Deloughrey for Chris Williamson.
Scorers: Michael O’Shea (1-5); Christy Kirwin (0-2); Micheál Keane and Gearóid Lynch (0-1 each).
Frees won: 25; wides: 10; 45s: 1
Yellow cards: Gearóid Lynch, Derek Deloughrey, David Russell.
Referee: Michael Rock (Ennistymon).


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