Derek Dormer was in Clarecastle to witness the home side defeat Éire Óg 2-18 to 0-15 in the Clare Cup
A GAME with all the hallmarks of a local derby – ferocious tackling, fierce exchanges, yellow cards and a vocal crowd – provided an excellent spectacle on Wednesday evening in Clarecastle.
Éire Óg started the game at a frenetic pace racing into a five points to one lead by the tenth minute but failure to score for the remainder of the half was hugely detrimental to their hopes of success.
Dominanation at restarts, winning their own easily and overturning the opposition’s, provided the platform for three David McNamara points, an Oran Guilfoyle beauty and a fine Michael Heneghan score.
From here though until the half time whistle Clarecastle simply took over with Killian McDermott inspiring his teammates with some fantastic scores.
With Stephen O’Halloran, Rory O’Connell and Darragh Healy now dominating primary possession the Magpies moved through the gears and in fact hit nine unanswered scores to lead at the interval 10 points to 5.
With the wind at their backs for the second half Éire Óg came roaring back into the contest scoring four of the first five scores to only trail by two – 11 to 9 – by the 38th minute.
It could have been better when a long Danny Russell clearance was latched onto by Darragh Stack, who bore down on goal firing across the keeper only to see Jonathan Griffey make a fine stop.
The game was now a fully charged local battle with tough tackling all over the field but it was the Magpies who kicked on again with Stephen O’Halloran hitting a purple patch scoring and assisting several others.
Philip Walsh then kept his side in it with a remarkable save from O’Halloran but the Magpies weren’t to be denied as moments later O’Halloran bore down on goal again only to unselfishly hand pass it off to the on rushing Killian McDermott who blasted home from close range despite Walsh somehow getting a touch to it.
To their credit Éire Óg never gave up landing the next few scores before James Doherty rifled an unstoppable shot into the top corner to finally see off a determined Townies challenge.
Overall a very entertaining contest played at a high intensity with great performances from Killian McDermott Stephen O’Halloran and Rory O’Connell for the winners while David McNamara Oran Guilfoyle and Danny Russell performed best for Éire Óg.
CLARECASTLE: Johnathan Griffey Hayden Starr Pat Tuohy Tommy Howard David Tuohy Darragh Healy Colin Brigdale Killian McDermott Barry Morrisey Stephen O Halloran Niall Galvin Rory O Connell Conor Halpin James Doherty Jack Murphy. SUBS: Kevin Hartigan for Niall Galvin 10 mins Ronan Donnelly for Darragh Healy HT inj Eoghan Wallace for Hayden Starr 38 mins Pat Kelly for Barry Morrisey 52 mins Oisin Casey for Pat kelly 55 mins inj
SCORERS: Killian McDermott 1-4 James Doherty 1-3 (3f) Stephen O Halloran 0-4 Jack Murphy 0-3 Rory O Connell 0-2 Conor Halpin 0-1 David Tuohy 0-1
ÉIRE ÓG: Philip Walshe Conor Kilcawley Conor O Halloran Cillian Moroney Niall McMahon Danny Russell Mark O Donnell Jack lynch Eoin Guilfoyle David McNamara Kevin Brennan Oran Guilfoyle Darragh Stack Andrew McIlwee Michael Henegan. SUBS: Cian Murphy for Andrew McElwee 48 mins Sean Mulloly for David McNamara 55 mins
SCORERS: David McNamara 0-6 ( 2f) Oran Guilfoyle 0-3 Michael Heneghan 0-2 Danny Russell 0-2 (2f) Darragh Stack 0-1 (1f) Mark 0 Donnell 0-1