Glenealy off to flyer
Glenealy 1-13 Carnew Emmets 0-10
Glenealy began the defence of their Wicklow Senior hurling title with a comfortable victory over old rivals Carnew Emmets in their Dacia Cars Senior hurling championship game played in Aughrim on Tuesday, July 10.
Despite the daily watering of the pitch in Aughrim, the playing surface was still bone dry and first touch control of the sliotar was of the utmost importance.
While both sides had a number of players who were comfortable with their control, Glenealy probably had the greater numbers.
Both sides started slowly and scores were scarce in the first quarter of an hour.
Jonathan O'Neill opened the scoring with a pointed free in the first minute but the next score did not come for almost ten minutes when Timmy Collins equalised with the Emmets' first point from play.
Carnew were finding it difficult to get past the Glenealy half backs with Danny Staunton having a fine game at centre back.
Likewise Glenealy were getting no change out of the Carnew rearguard with Bob Fitzgerald in goal dealing capably with anything coming his way.
Jonathan O'Neill pointed his second free after fifteen minutes to leave Glenealy ahead by 0-2 to 0-1 - a very lacklustre game up to now.
When Jonathan O'Neill beat Bob Fitzgerald from a penalty coming up to twenty minutes there looked to be a danger that Glenealy might pull away.
Cormac Doyle did get the second point for the Carnew men but points from Paul O'Brien, John Manley and Ruairi O'Neill pushed the champions six points ahead.
Carnew corner forward Seamus Osbourne reduced that lead to five points with the last score of the half.
It was clear that Carnew needed to improve a lot if they were to get back into the game in the second half.
They brought Graham Keogh on at full forward and he made an immediate impact catching, turning and shooting a point right from the second half throw in.
Unfortunately for the Emmets, this was to be their only score from play in the second period.
Enda Donoghue pointed a free to bring the lead back to a goal. Ruairi O'Neill responded for Glenealy with a point from play.
The next twenty minutes developed into a free taking shoot out between Glenealy's Jonathan O'Neill and Carnew's Enda Donoghue.
Carnew were battling strongly to get back into the game but Glenealy responded to keep that distance ahead.
Both sides were guilty of needless concession of frees and O'Neill and Donoghue kept punishing these indiscretions.
By twenty one minutes Glenealy were still ahead by 1-11 to 0-8. Alan Driver had Glenealy's final two points from play while Enda Donoghue pointed another free and a '65' to leave the final score at 1-13 to 0-10.
Enda scored all bar one point of the Carnew second half total from frees.
Glenealy did enough to stay ahead but both sides will be planning for big improvements as the championship progresses.
Scorers - Glenealy: Jonathan O'Neill 1-7, Ruairi O'Neill 0-2, Alan Driver 0-2, John Manley 0-1, Paul O'Brien 0-1.
Carnew Emmets: Enda Donoghue 0-6, Timmy Collins 0-1, Cormac Doyle 0-1, Seamus Osbourne 0-1, Graham Keogh 0-1.
Glenealy: Cian Staunton; Emmet Byrne, Joey Driver, Lee Kavanagh; Garry Byrne, Dan Staunton, Tommy Doyle; John Manley, Jonathan O'Neill; Gavin Weir, Jamie Byrne, Ruairi O'Neill; Paul O'Neill, Alan Driver, Jonathan O'Neill (J). Subs -Garry Hughes, Ronan Manley, Matthew Traynor.
Carnew Emmets: Bob Fitzgerald; Aaron Kinsella, John Walsh, Martin O'Brien; Drew Brennan, William Collins, John Doyle; Paul Nolan, Wayne Kinsella; Paudie McGing, Timmy Collins, Enda Donoghue; Cormac Doyle, Michael Collins, Seamus Osbourne. Subs: Graham Keogh, Robert Lambert, Mark Collins.
Referee: John Keenan (Aughrim).