Avondhu outfit not in the least bit flattered by margin of victory over Barryroe
CO-OP SUPERSTORES COUNTY PJHC
Having performed creditably in defeat against Kilbrittain the previous week-end, it was no major surprise that Milford got back to winning ways at the expense of Barryroe in the Co-Op Superstores county premier junior hurling championship tie in Coachford last Saturday.
The result keeps the North-Cork men in contention for a place in the championship’s knock-out stages ahead of their final game in the group against St Finbarr’s.
They turned in another encouraging display against Barryroe, and it’s fair to say they weren’t in the least bit flattered by their winning margin.
They were nine points up, 2-19 to 1-13, and cruising with under five minutes of regulation time remaining, but, for whatever reason, they lost their way in the closing stages, with the result that they were a little relieved to hear the final whistle.
While Barryroe’s second goal, which brought them back within striking range, came five minutes into stoppage time, they managed to mount one more promising, if unproductive, raid before the referee brought the proceedings to a halt.
Aside from their late lapse, however, there was much to admire about Milford’s display, as they comfortably held the whip-hand for most of the hour.
The Avondhu men did endure a bit of a wobble midway through the first-half when Barryroe goalkeeper Billy O’Donovan rattled the net from a penalty to give his side the lead for the first time.
Points from Robbie Kiely and Adam McSweeney followed as Barryroe went 1-5 to 0-5 ahead, but the picture changed dramatically again before half-time.
In contrast to the previous game against Kilbrittain, Eoin Dillon struggled to find his range from long-range frees on this occasion, but it proved to be something of a blessing in disguise in the 25th minute.
After plucking Dillon’s delivery from the clouds, Henry O’Gorman rifled in a great goal to put Milford back in front, 1-6 to 1-5, where they were to remain until the end.
O’Gorman and full-forward Tadgh O’Flynn caused havoc in attack from the outset, with O’Flynn, fed by O’Gorman, putting his name on Milford’s second goal as they finished the first-half with a real flourish.
It enabled them to turn over 2-9 to 1-6 to the good.
Aside from the excellent O’Gorman and O’Flynn, Jamie O’Connor had his moments in attack before the break, as did Michael O’Flynn at midfield and Kieran O’Flynn, Eoin Dillon and Daire Hannigan in the half-back line.
Holding most of the aces, Milford had little difficulty in maintaining an advantage during the third-quarter.
They looked ready to coast home after Michael O’Flynn and Jamie O’Connor (2) shared a quick hat-trick of points to push them 2-18 to 1-12 ahead inside the last ten minutes.
O’Connor sparkled at wing-forward in the second-half when, rather surprisingly, both Henry O’Gorman and Tadgh O’Flynn were called ashore before the finish.
Most likely the Milford management felt they could afford the luxury of emptying the bench in the closing stages, and, in fairness, it did appear as if the team was home and hosed when O’Gorman and O’Flynn were replaced.
Barryroe’s never-say-die attitude hadn’t been factored into the equation, however, and, with impressive attacker Adam McSweeney leading the charge, they staged a gutsy rally near the end.
It yielded points from McSweeney, Ryan O’Donovan and effective substitute Brian O’Donovan before David Kiely added the goal that briefly rekindled their aspirations.
It was a case of too little too late for the losers, but it was a bit too close for comfort from a Milford perspective, although, in the final analysis, there were certainly more positives than negatives to be taken from their performance overall.
MILFORD: M Cremin; S O’Flynn, C O’Sullivan, R O’Gorman; K O’Flynn, E Dillon 0-1, D Hannigan; M O’Flynn 0-1, P Watson; J O’Connor 0-4, C O’Gorman 0-1, J O’Flynn; A Watson 0-1, T O’Flynn 1-1, H O’Gorman 1-9 (6f) Subs: B Murphy 0-1 for C O’Gorman (injured 28), S O’Connell 0-1 (f) for H O’Gorman, 52, T Curran for T O’Flynn, 55, P O’Flynn for P Watson, 61
BARRYROE: Billy O’Donovan 1-0 (penalty); D O’Sullivan, J O’Brien, M Ryan; S O’Riordan, J Moloney 0-1, D Murphy; C Sheehy, P Moloney; D Kiely1-0, R Kiely 0-1, R O’Donovan 0-2; A McSweeney 0-11 (6f, 2’65’s), D O’Driscoll, T O’Buachalla Subs: T Kearney for P Moloney, 42, Brian O’Donovan 0-2 for O’Buachalla, 42, J Murphy for Sheehy, 49, C Madden for O’Brien, 56, D McCarthy for O’Driscoll, 58
REFEREE: J Horgan (Gleann na Laoi)