Gritty Geraldines overcomes injury struggles to edge past Oulart-The Ballagh

Geraldine O’Hanrahans 1-18 Oulart-The Ballagh 3-10

ERALDINE O’HANRAHANS overcame some early injury problems to kick off her Joyces Expert Intermediate ‘A’ Hurling Championship Group B campaign off to a flying start in Clongeen on Tuesday last week.

With only a quarter of the match up, Conor Cleere and Eoin Kelly were sent off, but the New Ross side didn’t flinch.

They kept fighting and took their scores well, with Eoghan Cashin in excellent form, while they were also grateful for some big saves from goalkeeper Brandon Gardiner.

With Cashin signing on at will and his attacking counterparts participating, the Geraldines took a 0-6 to 0-2 lead after the opening ten minutes. However, a superb goal from Tomás Dunne, followed by Adam McRedmond’s opening point, saw the teams deadlocked after the first quarter.

Oulart-The Ballagh couldn’t continue from there, and instead Ross scored four of the last five points to end the first half. Only Eamon Murphy fought back for the Enniscorthy District side, as Geraldine O’Hanrahans went from 0-10 to 1-4 in front.

The first six points of the second half were split evenly as the status quo remained. However, as the game wore on Ross’ crew began to purr and after a run of runs Jack Foran was on hand to send home a loose sliothar after a save from Ben O ‘Connor and a release attempt got in his way.

That left Geraldine O’Hanrahans in a 1-15 to 1-8 lead with 14 minutes to go. Oulart-The Ballagh fought back and, when Peter Murphy converted a penalty shortly after Eamon Murphy had kicked in a free kick, the deficit was back to three.

Ross didn’t panic, and instead maintained and expanded their lead thanks to Cashin’s scoring. They were still at least one score clear until Peter Murphy found the net for the second time three minutes into added time, which proved too little, too late for Oulart-The Ballagh.

Geraldine O’Hanrahans: Brandon Gardiner; Paddy Somers, Conor Cleere, Liam Walsh; Dylan Wickham, Garry Hill, Padraig Bailey; Diarmuid Kehoe (0-1), Jack Foran (1-1); Barry Kelly (0-1), Dylan Egan (0-1), Barry Roche; Eoghan Cashin (0-12, 10 free), Enda Kelly (0-2), Eoin Kelly. Subs. – Jake Byrne for Cleere, inj., Bryan Haberlin for Eoin Kelly, inj., Danielius Niekis for Roche, Michael Cullen for Egan.

Oulart-Le Ballagh: Ben O’Connor; Sean Murphy, Dennis Morton, Bertie Finn; Jim Finn (0-1), Eamon Murphy (0-2 free), Kevin Nimmo; Cormac Finn (0-1), Tomás Dunne (1-0); Adam Nolan, Des Mythen (0-1), Peter Murphy (2-3, 1-0 pen., 0-2 free); Darryl Gray, Aaron Byrne, Adam McRedmond (0-2). Under. – Gary Murphy for S. Murphy.

Arbitrator: James Mullally (Gusserane).

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