Under 16 Hurling Championship Report 06-07-2016

Clonakilty under 16 hurlers took on Western Gaels in the opening round of the 2016 West Region championship on Wednesday, July 6th in Ballinacarriga. With little or no preparation done for the game Clon were not well fancied for this tie and had to rely on a number of under 14 players to field a team. In the event, the team surpassed all expectations and turned in a wonderful display of committed hurling to easily get the better of their determined opponents, who were forced to field without some of their more influential players. Clon played against the wind in the opening half but quickly showed their intentions with Brian White pointing form play after a minute. Thomas Palmer, who had a fine outing, added a second point from play soon after. It took the Mid-Cork side a while to settle but they did open their account with a point from a free and followed with another from play soon after to level the scores. After ten minutes Clon scored a cracking goal through Odhran Bancroft and this was followed by four excellent points from play by the magnificent Liam Halligan. Western Gaels did add two points from frees but Clon’s dangerous full-forward, Brian White was starting to become more influential as the half went on and he pointed a fine free. The Mid-Cork boys then struck for a goal but any thoughts of a revival were killed off directly from the puck-out as Thomas Palmer went on a brilliant solo run before parting to White who then billowed the back of the net. This goal was a crushing blow to the Western Gaels side as Clon retired at the break leading by 2-07 to 1-04. Clon had the advantage of the fresh breeze on the resumption and quickly put the outcome beyond doubt. White pointed from play and Bancroft did likewise. Halligan added a similar score and the game was over as a contest when young Shane Dullea crashed home a fine goal soon after. It was all Clon now and the ever more influential White scored four points in succession, three from play and one free. Clon’s outstanding full-back, Tadgh Fitzpatrick added a further point from play before the gallant Western Gaels side got some reward for their determined efforts with a late goal and point, both from play, to leave the final score at 3-15 to 2-07 in favour of a Clon side that surprised even their most ardent supporters. For Clon, Cian Hurley kept a fine goal and his lengthy puck-outs and clearances were vital throughout. Full-back, Tadgh Fitzpatrick was outstanding all through and got excellent help from two tremendously committed corner backs,  Dylan Geaney and James Campbell. Cian O’Donoghue was in control throughout in the number 6 jersey and both wing-backs Niall Beamish and Matthew Mc Carthy  played well, often going forward to great effect. Liam Halligan and Odhran Bancroft dominated around the middle and Halligan scored some wonderful points.  Clon’s forwards were brilliantly led by Thomas Palmer on the “forty”, flanked by the lively Shane Dullean and Jack Wycherley. Brian White was outstanding at full-forward throughout and got great assistance from Evan Corcoran and young Liam Knowles. Evan Kelly and Ryan Tobin made both made telling contributions when introduced. Overall, the win was as impressive as it was unexpected. Clon now advance to meet Kilbree in the semi-final