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O'Callaghans Mills/ Bodyke celebrate with the cup in the U17B Final at Meelick on Sunday. Pic Arthur Ellis.

Mills and Bodyke retain Clare minor B title

A MEMORABLE weekend in Meelick was confirmed on Sunday morning when O’Callaghan’s Mills/Bodyke retained their Minor B crown, writes Eoin Brennan.

Only 24 hours after O’Callaghan’s Mills’ flagship side had consolidated their senior status by a whisker at the same venue, it would need just as much of a steady hand for the minor amalgamation to overcome their sticky neighbours Scariff/Ogonnelloe.

A first half brace of Jamie Howard goals certainly helped as it provided some clear breathing space for the Mills/Bodyke to lead from start to finish.

Howard, Sean Boyce, Thomas Wiley, Tadhg Kilkenny, joint-captains Darragh Moroney and Sean Cooney and a formidable half-back unit of Cathal McNamara, Billy Scanlon and Liam Minogue led the
O’Callaghan’s Mills/Bodyke challenge superbly while centre-back Scott Cairns, Sean Hartigan, Aaron Collins and Donnacha McNulty provided the greatest resistance throughout.

Scariff/Ogonnelloe’s attacking division of Sean Treacy, Rossa Keelan, Liam Madden and Tadhg Minogue had their moments but realistically they required more of a cutting edge to be able to fully reel in the leaders.

It didn’t take long for the first cut as following a Sean Boyce point, O’Callaghan’s Mills/Bodyke pounced directly from the puck-out, with Jamie Howard firing to the net despite the best efforts of goalkeeper Ethan Harrington at 1-1 to 0-0 by the third minute.

Scariff-Ogonnelloe’s response was admirable as they grabbed five of the next six points, two from Keelan and Madden to level up the tie by the 21st minute.

That parity didn’t last long however as in the next passage of play Howard punished a defensive error to put daylight between the sides once more, with centre-back Billy Scanlon (2), the excellent Darragh Moroney and a Thomas Wiley free aiding O’Callaghan’s Mills/Bodyke’s 2-6 to 0-7 half-time cushion.

Indeed, it would get worse before things improved for Scariff-Ogonnelloe after Wiley and Boyce stretched the gap to seven only two minutes into the new half.

Scariff-Ogonnelloe craved a goal but were initially thwarted when John Walsh’s shot came back off the crossbar. It didn’t deter them however but it took a moment of ingenuity from Liam Madden to alter the script as he fired a 25 metre free to the net to slash the deficit to just three at 2-8 to 1-8 nearing the two-thirds marks.

That would be the extent of the revolt though, save for further frees through Madden and Treacy that were repelled.

Undaunted, O’Callaghan’s Mills/Bodyke got back on the frontfoot, with Wiley and Moroney fleshing out the lead to four by the final water break while they also matched their opponents coming down the final straight to cement back-to-back Minor B titles despite the change in age to Under 17.

O’Callaghan’s Mills/Bodyke: Daryl O’Donnell; Daniel Burke, Tadhg Kilkenny, Owen Drost; Cathal McNamara, Billy Scanlon, Liam Minogue; Sean Cooney (Joint-Captain), Darragh Moroney (Joint-Captain); Niall Melody, Thomas Wiley, Cormac Keane; Jamie Howard, Michael O’Brien, Sean Boyce. Subs: Edan Buckley for Keane (23), Mikey Canney for Melody (44). Oscar Dowling for Canny (59). Scorers: Jamie Howard (2-1); Thomas Wiley (0-5f); Darragh Moroney, Sean Boyce (0-3 each); Billy Scanlon (0-2, 1f)

Scariff-Ogonnelloe: Ethan Harrington; Matthew Cunnane, Benny Tuohy (Joint-Captain), Lee O’Brien; Jack Ryan, Scott Cairns, Sean Hartigan; Aaron Collins, Donnacha McNulty (Joint-Captain); Tadhg Minogue, Rossa Keelan, Liam Madden; Rory Ryan, Sean Treacy, John Walsh. Subs: David O’Donnell for Walsh (44), Mici Sheedy for R. Ryan (56) Scorers: Liam Madden (1-4, 1-2f, 1’65); Rossa Keelan, Tadhg Minogie, Sean Treacy (0-2 each); Aaron Collins (0-1)

Referee: Kevin Corry

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