KILMACUD CROKES 4-17 BALLINTEER ST JOHN’S 0-8
A POCKET of people in O’Toole Park last night. Larry Ryan was in the audience. How many Kilmacud games has the great man seen?
The Stillorgan faithful will be onto the Kilmacud Ticketmaster ahead of the Dublin Senior Hurling Championship quarter-final. Crokes were already in the hat before this encounter. It was their third win from three in Group A, and their easiest of all.
In truth, it was a stroll in the Crumlin sunshine. Crokes were in command from the off. Ballinteer were missing a cluster of players, but they weren’t interested in opening the book of excuses.
They trailed by 3-9 to 0-2 as they sipped their tea. They have tasted better.
The Páirc de Burca lads enjoyed ample time to select their options. The forwards availed of a harvest of possession.
Ryan O’Dwyer kept everything simple. Kevin O’Loughlin’s eye was in. In the seventh minute, down at the road end, he went for the jackpot from a close-in free, and the three stars came up.
Five minutes before half-time, Jack Dougan got the second goal. It was a bit of a scratch card effort. His long clearance from the left took a kick off the turf and ended up in the sack.
Jack was as surprised as anyone, but afterwards his colleagues were nominating him for goal-of-the-season! But there was no touch of fortune about the third goal from Barry O’Rorke.
There was a minute left to the break. O’Loughlin slipped him the pass, and from a tight angle to the left of the posts, O’Rorke found the basket.
Earlier, Conor Clinton’s point went near to being the pick of the crop. The sliotar bounced high on the sod and, running onto it, Conor, one-handed, tennis-style, lobbed it over the net.
Ballinteer battled gamely to bridge the deficit. Aodhán Clabby landed some excellent frees. But Crokes kept their mind on the job, and their two hands on the hurl.
Three minutes from time, O’Loughlin, with another free from close range, again rattled the cobwebs.
Referee, Eadhmonn Mac Suibhne, didn’t play much additional time. Nobody was complaining.
SCORERS –Kilmacud Crokes: K O’Loughlin 2-7 (2-4f); B O’Rorke 1-4; J Doughan 1-0; C Clinton 0-2; D Mulligan, R O’Dwyer, S McGrath, R Walsh 0-1 each. Ballinteer St John’s: A Clabby 0-7 (6f), O Power 0-1 (f).
KILMACUD CROKES: M Collins; N Corcoran, B O’Carroll, G McMorrow; J Burke, R O’Loughlin, J Doughan; N O’Riordan, D Mulligan; J Sweeney, D Kelly, R O’Dwyer; B O’Rorke, C Clinton, K O’Loughlin. Subs: R Walsh for O’Carroll (ht); S McGrath for Sweeney (ht); D Browne for O’Riordan (ht).
BALLINTEER ST JOHN’S: L O’Flaherty; R Collins, C O’Brien, R Redmond; F MacGabhann, K Nolan, G O’Broin; Jack Gilligan, K Davis; O Power, A Clabby, J Maher; E McKeown, M ó Meachair, C Lane. Sub: C Duffy for Redmond (35).
REF: E Mac Suibhne (St Jude’s).
– Niall Scully- Evening Herald