Sunday 4 December 2016

Richie Hogan on goal spree as hurling All Stars serve up high scoring contest in Texas

2014 All Stars 7-15 2015 All Stars 9-9

Martin Brehenyin Austin, Texas

Published 14/12/2015 | 07:21

Michael Fennelly, 2015 All-Stars, in action against Kieran Bergin, left, and David O'Callaghen, 2014 All-Stars. GAA All-Star Tour 2015, sponsored by Opel, 2014 All-Stars v 2015 All-Stars. St Edwards University, Austin, Texas, USA. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE
Michael Fennelly, 2015 All-Stars, in action against Kieran Bergin, left, and David O'Callaghen, 2014 All-Stars. GAA All-Star Tour 2015, sponsored by Opel, 2014 All-Stars v 2015 All-Stars. St Edwards University, Austin, Texas, USA. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE
Lee Chin, 2014 All-Stars, in action against Richie Hogan, 2015 All-Stars. GAA All-Star Tour 2015, sponsored by Opel, 2014 All-Stars v 2015 All-Stars. St Edward’s University, Austin, Texas, USA. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

It’s all about the event rather than the competition with the GAA/GPA Opel All Stars annual trip to some far-flung destination but both benefited from the exhibition game at the St. Edwards University in Austin.

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The teams served up an interesting contest on a day when heavy early morning rain gave way to a cool, crisp afternoon for what was the first time that such a high-powered group of hurlers had played in Texas, Hosted by the Celtic Cowboys club, there were fears that the game might have to be called off, due to the heavy rain,which fell overnight and well into the day.

However, it went ahead and the Irish community in Austin enjoyed a lively encounter, which ended in a draw, Richie Hogan hit four goals for the 2015 All Stars while Brian Carroll was top scorer for the 2014 squad, hitting 2-5.

Texas has seen a growth in GAA affairs in recent years and now hosts four clubs in cities across the Lone Star State.

Lee Chin, 2014 All-Stars, in action against Richie Hogan, 2015 All-Stars. GAA All-Star Tour 2015, sponsored by Opel, 2014 All-Stars v 2015 All-Stars. St Edward’s University, Austin, Texas, USA. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE
Lee Chin, 2014 All-Stars, in action against Richie Hogan, 2015 All-Stars. GAA All-Star Tour 2015, sponsored by Opel, 2014 All-Stars v 2015 All-Stars. St Edward’s University, Austin, Texas, USA. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

Celtic Cowboys in Austin have been  especially proactive, which resulted in them being chosen to host the All Stars game. And while the tackling wasn’t exactly of All-Ireland championship standard, it was was still good enough to entertain the GAA community, who are so proud of their achievements in promoting the national game in Texas.

The 2014 All Stars led by two points at half time (1-13 to 2-6) before the strike rate improved dramatic in the second half.

Scorers: 2014: B Carroll 2-5, P Horgan 1-3, P Maher, W McNamara, L Chin 1-1 each, S Hickey 1-0, K Bergin, D Hannon, S Dowling, C McDonald 0-1.

2015: R Hogan 4-0, P Murphy 2-2, J Holden 2-0, D Burke 1-2, G Aylward 0-3,N McManus, M Shanahan 0-1 each.

2014: E Murphy (Kilkenny), W McNamara (Limerick), JJ Delaney (Kilkenny), L Chin (Wexford), L Rushe (Dublin), K Bergin (Tipperary),  D Hannon ( Limerick), P Horgan (Cork),  P Maher (Tipperary), B Carroll (Offaly), S Dowling (Limerick), D O’Callaghan (Dublin), C McDonald (Wexford).

2015: C Callanan (Galway), P Murphy (Kilkenny), J Holden (Kilkenny), N Connors (Waterford), C Buckley (Kilkenny), J Griffin (Kerry), N McManus (Antrim), D Burke (Galway), M Fennelly (Kilkenny), G Aylward (Kilkenny), R Hogan (Kilkenny), S Fives (Waterford), C Fennelly (Kilkenny), M Shanahan (Waterford).

Referee: J Owens (Wexford)

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