U14 B North Tipperary Hurling Champions 2014

02 Sep 2014 by Gilbert Williams

Kilruane MacDonaghs captured the North U14 ‘B’ hurling title with a 1-11 to 2-7 victory against Shannon Rovers in Borrisokane. This was MacDonaghs first ‘B’ title in this grade, having won a total of twelve championships (plus seven divisional Féile titles) in the ‘A’ grade. This victory marked a milestone in the club’s history as it was the 150th North title to come to the parish.

On a calm gloomy evening a large crowd assembled in Gardiner Park. Earlier in the season the teams had played out a draw in the Billy O’Meara tournament in MacDonagh Park, so another close encounter was expected. MacDonaghs were first off the mark when the outstanding Sean McAdams sent the sliotar sailing over the bar. Michael Slattery cancelled this out with a white flag. Rovers were operating a two man inside forward line and Kilruane were finding it difficult to come to terms with this. Sean McAdams and Michael Slattery traded points from frees to leave the sides level. MacDonaghs received a huge scare when Mark O’Neill got an accidental blow to the hand in a ruck. Fortunately, after treatment from Jimmy Cahill he was able to resume.

Sean MacAdams and Michael Slattery swopped points once more. Nathan Lynch got in on the act with a point to edge MacDonaghs one clear. Rovers got a huge boost when Manus Heenan found the net and they added two points, the second from a Michael Slattery free. The Shannonsiders were now in the driving seat and held a four point advantage. The prolific Sean McAdams reduced the gap with a point from play and just before the interval Jack Dwan tapped the sliotar to the net from close range to leave the sides on 1-5 as they retired to the dressing room.

MacDonaghs were quickly out of the blocks in the second half but registered two wides. Marksman Sean McAdams fired over a free after a foul on Owen Usman. Rovers responded with a goal from a twenty metre free from Michael Slattery. His shot was partially parried but found the net. Rovers now had their tails up and tacked on a point to go three in front. A Rovers players was penalised for over carrying and Sean McAdams made no mistake from the resultant free. Sean was on target from another free and raised a white flag from a 65 after goal attempts by Devlin Courtney and Sean had been thwarted by the Rovers defence.

The teams were all square and the match was up for grabs. Sean McAdams managed to whip a ground ball over the bar although he was on his knees. Jack Dwan was fouled as be burst through and for once Sean McAdams didn’t punish the indiscretion. Rovers drew level with a point from the right wing and it seemed the game was destined for a draw. There was one more twist. Deep into injury time a push by a Rovers player gave Sean McAdams one last chance for glory from a fifty metre free. Sean showed nerves of steel as he calmly slotted the free over the black spot and MacDonaghs were champions.

It was a game that could have gone either way and the result was in doubt until Ciaran Timmons blew the final whistle. After the game John Delaney, chairman of North Tipperary Bord na nÓg presented the Brendan Corcoran Cup to captain Mark O’Neill. Congratulations to all the panel and management team of John Quinlan, Eoin Hogan and Gilbert Williams. Thanks to Rovers for making it a tremendous final. They were very gracious in defeat.

Team: Páidí Williams, Aaron Morgan, Jack Dunne, Conor Quinlan, Cian Spillane, Mark O’Neill, Dylan Moran, Devlin Courtney, Kian O’Kelly, Owen Usman, Sean McAdams (0-10), Nathan Lynch (0-1), Matthew Moyles, Jack Dwan (1-0) and Matthew Spain. Sub: Luke Morkan.

In the county semi-final MacDonaghs will play Moyne-Templetuohy. This game is expected to take place on Saturday, September 6th. Unfortunately, MacDonaghs will be without the services of Dylan Moran for this game. Dylan broke a finger in a fall off a bicycle. He was gave an outstanding performance in the North final and his absence will be sorely felt.


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