Banner GAA Ennis 2-16
The Banner travelled to Crusheen to take on Crusheen-Tubber in round 2 of the U17 Minor hurling championship on Wednesday evening. As the evening played out the supporters of both teams were treated to a pulsating and entertaining encounter. The home side raced into an early lead and after 12 minutes were leading by 6 points to the Ennis sides solitary 1 point. It looked like the game might be over by half time as Crusheen-Tubber were very dominant at that stage. The Ennis lads worked extremely hard though from there on and played some lovely passing movements to work their way back into the game and at half time the Banner side lead on a scoreline of 1-07 to 0-09 having dominated the second quarter. The Banner goal was scored by Kaden Deegan-Herlihy after he made a brilliant penetrating run through the Crusheen-Tubber defence and tucked his shot into the left corner of the net. Some of the other Banner scorers included reliable free-taker Scott O’Loughlin-Kelly and Eoin Fitzpatrick. Paddy Molony in particular was causing all sorts of problems for the Crusheen-Tubber defence.
On the resumption it was ‘tit for tat’ as both sides again exchanged early points. In the middle period of the second half Crusheen-Tubber had a period of dominance that resulted in good scores from Clare County minor All Ireland winners Osgar Dunford and Joe Clancy. By the 20th minute Crusheen-Tubber held a 2-point lead and then they struck for what appeared to be a game defining goal that left the Banner lads 5 points behind with 8 minutes remaining including injury time. The Ennis boys found the energy to dig deep and refused to throw in the towel. In the next 6 minutes The Banner outscored the home side by 3 points to 1 leaving just a goal between the sides with two minutes of injury time left on the clock. Then, the Banner won a 20m free out near the right sideline. With a goal needed Scott O’Loughlin-Kelly played the ball across the goal where Cailum Henchy did tremendously well to win possession and centre a great pass to the on-running Caleb Walsh, who beat a defender with a good sidestep and then pulled the trigger to rattle the net and level the tie with just a 1 minute of injury time remaining. The Ennis lads worked cleverly to defend the next puckout when the referee blew the final whistle with the spoils shared. Other than those already mentioned others to shine on the night were Sean Hegarty and Conor O’Toole. Goalkeeper Thomas Mathius Williams also made 2-point blank saves that any goalkeeper would be proud of. In truth the Banner had great performances in almost every position on the pitch as the overall team work rate and team spirit was excellent throughout.
Banner GAA Ennis Team: 1. Thomas Mathius Williams 2. Sean Hegarty 3. Tony Burke 4. Tom Spelman 5. Keelan Bane 6. Cailum Henchy 7. Conor O’Toole 8. Kaden Deegan-Herlihy 9. Caleb Walsh 10. Conal O’Reilly 11. Scott O’Loughlin-Kelly 12. Ben O’Halloran 13. Paddy Molony 14. Eoin Fitzpatrick 15. Ethan Walsh.
Subs: 16. Conor Coffey 17. Sean Crowe 18. Jack Burke 19. Niall Casey 20. Callum Hayes 21. Max Montwill 22. Matthew Bashua 23. Eoin Hogan 24. James O’Connor 25. Tadhg Bane