Laune Rangers 1-12, Glenbeigh/Glencar/Cromane 1-10
After an 18 month wait, the Mid Kerry Under 21 Final of 2020 was played in Beaufort on Saturday evening. Laune Rangers faced off against Glenbeigh/Glencar/Cromane, and despite being without a number of players, had the squad depth to pull through in the end.
GGC started brightly, scoring the first point of the game through Rian O’Donovan. Ronan O’Shea pointed a free for Rangers but points by Adrian O’Connor and Darragh McKeefrey (free) put GGC ahead again. Padraig Ahern pulled off a point blank save in the Rangers goal, before Dáire Cleary pointed for Rangers, while Cleary also nullified a Rian O’Donovan point to see GGC leading 0-4 to 0-3 at the first water break.
Darragh McKeefrey and Adrian O’Connor added points for GGC before Rangers put together a few great passages of play, although a sole pointed free for Ronan O’Shea was all that was reaped as Roan Moriarty shot wide in a great goal chance. Dara Casey closed out the half with an excellent long range point to see GGC take a three point lead into the break, although Shane O’Neill was issued a black card late in the half.
Half Time Score:- Laune Rangers 0-4, Glenbeigh/Glencar/Cromane 0-7
Laune Rangers flew out of the traps after the restart, with a temporary one man advantage and the breeze at their backs. Gearóid Hassett (2) and Roan Moriarty (2) both scored excellent points to put Rangers ahead before Shane O’Neill returned to the field. Liam Roche levelled matters with a point, although cries of “throw ball” were well founded in the build up. Rangers captain Pa Carey got upfield to point his team ahead, before it was cancelled out by a pointed free by Adrian O’Connor to leave scores level at 0-9 a piece at the second water break.
Laune Rangers pushed on in the early part of the final quarter, and points by Dáire Cleary (free) & Gabe Griffin gave them the advantage before the reigning champions hit the net – Gabriel Griffin with a great run from the right flank before sending the ball across to Roan Moriarty at the far post, who in turn tapped it back to Dáire Cleary who tipped it home.
Rangers were now five ahead, and frustration got the better of Dara Casey who was show a red card for verbals towards the match referee. Dáire Cleary added a point to his tally, but Adrian O’Connor matched it with a pointed free at the other end. There was just enough time for a little more drama, as GGC were awarded a penalty in strange circumstances that even surprised the attacking team. Adrian O’Connor dispatched it past Podge Ahern, but the final whistle was blown to see Laune Rangers retain the Mid Kerry Under 21 title
Full Time Score:- Laune Rangers 1-12, Glenbeigh/Glencar/Cromane 1-10
Considering Laune Rangers were under-strength on the day – without players like Fiachra Clifford, David Mangan, Conor Murphy, Mark O’Connor & Matt Leslie among others – the reigning champions went into the game as possible underdogs.
The strength in depth of the squad stood up to the test though, with a number of big performances. Podge Ahern made a return to football to take his place in goals and made some excellent saves while his kickouts were excellent. Pa Carey played a captains role in leading the defence as he and his wing backs were dangerous going forward. Gabe Griffin played a key role with an industrious shift, but the stand out performance was that of Dáire Cleary who picked up the official Man of the Match award sponsored by O’Sullivan’s Haven Pharmacy Killorglin.
Patrick Carey followed his brother Eamonn (B Team) and Senior captain Kieran Crowley in picking up three pieces of silverware in a great week for the club, as he was presented with the Eugie Ferris Cup by Mid Kerry Board Chairman Tim Coffey.
Laune Rangers:- Padraig Ahern, Oisín Daly, Seán Arthurs, Evan Madden, Eoin Clifford, Patrick Carey (capt, 0-1), Seán Cleary, Eoin O’Sullivan, Stephen Sealy, Gabriel Griffin (0-1), Dáire Cleary (1-4, 2f), Daragh O’Connor, Ronan O’Shea (0-2f), Roan Moriarty (0-2), Gearóid Hassett (0-2). Subs: Callum Russell for D O’Connor, Marc Clifford for Moriarty, Rory O’Connor for Daly; Cian O’Shea, Darragh O’Shea, James Treacy, Marc Clifford, Patrick Brennan, Daniel Evans, Shane Doona.
Glenbeigh/Glencar/Cromane:- Cian Knight, Brice Dourieu, Diarmuid McGillicuddy, Conor Sugrue, Seán T Sheehan, Liam Roche (0-1), Oisín O’Connor, Liam Smith, Tommy Quirke, Gearóid Griffin, Adrian O’Connor (capt, 1-4, 1 pen, 2f), Shane O’Neill, Darragh McKeefrey (0-2), Dara Casey (0-1), Rian O’Donovan (0-2). Subs: Seán Quirke, Maurice O’Connor, Cathal Crosby; Jack McGillicuddy, Daniel Kelly, Eanna Healy, Aodhán Roche, Ronan Foley, Jason Clifford, Niall Murphy, Padhraic McMahon, Jack O’Sullivan, Shane Ahern.
Laune Rangers Team vs GGC. Back Row (L-R):- Fiachra Clifford, Padraig Ahern, Gabriel Griffin, Rory O’Connor, Evan Madden, Marc Clifford, Callum Russell, Roan Moriarty, Eoin O’Sullivan, Oisín Daly, Eoin Clifford.
Front Row:- Shane Doona, Cian O’Shea, Darragh O’Shea, James Treacy, Stephen Sealy, Seán Cleary, Gearóid Hassett, Dáire Cleary, Seán Arthurs, Gearóid Hassett, Ronan O’Shea, Patrick Carey