The Nenagh Éire Óg minor hurlers recorded a ten-point win over a determined Portroe team at Puckane on Thursday evening.
Ger Gavin North Tipperary
Minor A Hurling Championship
Nenagh Éire Óg 4-16 Portroe 2-12
Portroe took the lead thanks to an impressive point inside the opening nine seconds of the game, but the Blues hit back with a Conor McCarthy effort almost immediately. A converted free edged Portroe back into the lead before goals from Adam Healy and Conor McCarthy helped Éire Óg into a 2-1 to 0-2 lead with just four minutes played.
A Conor McCarthy point left six between the sides before Portroe hit back with two points (one free) of their own. Efforts from Conor McCarthy and Jake Morris (free) re-established the six-point gap between the sides before Portroe responded with a converted free in the 14th minute (2-4 to 0-5).
Éire Óg’s third goal materialised in the 17th minute and on this occasion came courtesy of hard-working full-forward Adam Carey. Points from Jake Morris (free), Adam Healy and Anthony Walsh then forced the Blues eleven points clear (3-7 to 0-5).
Portroe closed out the half in positive fashion with a converted ’65 and a point from play before a Jake Morris effort brought the opening half to a close. At the break Éire Óg led 3-8 to 0-6. Referee Tommy Ryan corrected the scoreline at the interval to 3-7 to 0-6.
Two Portroe points during the opening two minutes of the second half cut the Blues’ lead significantly before Niall McKeogh responded for Éire Óg. An Adam Carey goal in the 33rd minute helped Nenagh into a 4-9 to 0-8 lead before Portroe hit back with a goal of their own in the 35th minute. Portroe then added a point to their tally to leave nine between them (4-9 to 1-9).
Points from Jake Morris (free), Adam Healy and Seán Shanahan forced Éire Óg twelve clear entering the final quarter.
To their absolute credit Portroe fought on manfully and were misfortunate to see Éire Óg ‘keeper Shane Hennessy save a 21-yard free from Ruadhan Mulrooney in the 48th minute.
A placed ball from Portroe was soon cancelled out by efforts from Adam Healy and Craig Himli before a Jake Morris point in the 56th minute helped Éire Óg into a 4-15 to 1-10 lead. A Craig Himli brace in the closing minutes concluded the scoring from an Éire Óg point of view, but Portroe refuse to give up and closed out the game impressively notching a goal and a point in second half injury time.
At the final whistle referee Tommy Ryan corrected the final score to 4-16 to 2-12. The Blues’ record of the match indicates that the final score was 4-18 to 2-12. No scoreboard was in operation in Puckane.
The Nenagh Éire Óg minor A hurling team have been drawn in group one of the North Tipperary minor A hurling championship alongside Roscrea, Newport Gaels, Borris-Ileigh and Portroe. In the previous round the Blues beat Borris-Ileigh 1-15 to 3-8.
Manager John Manley is joined on the management team by selectors Derek Lillis, Christy McLoughlin and Paudie Gleeson.
Nenagh Éire Óg: Shane Hennessy, Gavin O’Connor, Jason McKenna, Connie O’Reilly, Ethan O’Brien, Anthony Walsh (0-1), Conor Bonnar, Jake Morris (0-5, 0-3 frees), Alex Jones, Craig Himli (0-3), Adam Healy (1-4, 0-2 frees), Niall McKeogh (0-1), Conor McCarthy (1-3), Adam Carey (2-0), Seán Shanahan (0-1). Subs: (54th) Jack McGrath for Niall McKeogh, (57th) Liam Maher for Jake Morris, (60th) Daniel Molamphy for Adam Healy, (61st) Cian O’Brien for Conor McCarthy, (61st) Fiachra Starr for Connie O’Reilly.
Referee: Tommy Ryan (Kildangan).
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