Goal hungry Boherbue retain Duhallow title
Duhallow Junior 'A' Football Championship: Boherbue 3-7 Lyre 0-10
Boherbue maintained their grip of the E Tarrant and Sons Skoda Dealer Duhallow Junior A Football Championship with a six-point victory over Lyre to record their third consecutive victory in a tense decider Castlemagner last Sunday evening.
The reigning champions were made to work by a resolute Lyre, Boherbue's better workrate and all round sharpness showed in the opening quarters to both halves. Though wayward shooting limited both sides, Boherbue always held a far greater goal scoring threat and confirmed by three major strikes at crucial stages.
A less than memorable occasion for Lyre, not possessing the firepower to make a sustained impact, they will reflect ruefully on a first half, backed by a strong breeze, they failed to make decent headway and turn possession into scores. At times, the general quality of play proved scrappy for a large attendance yet Bohebue had reason to be confident on breaching the Lyre in quick succession.
Lyre had made the early running, their confidence received a timely boost, Conor O'Keeffe pointing the challengers ahead. Boherbue imposed themselves, sounding a warning where it took a good save by Lyre 'keeper Seán Murphy to deny Gerry O'Sullivan.
Unfortunately, Lyre failed to read the danger signals, Jerry O'Connor upended to win a penalty and duly sent Murphy the wrong way on converting the spotter. Boherbue's rising confidence surfaced from the solid play of Jack Daly, Kevin Cremin and Michael Murphy in defence, Billy O'Gorman and Michael O'Connor grafted hard at midfield with John Corkery and man of match Andrew O'Connor showing up effectively in attack.
Lyre were operating in fits and starts, failing to make the most of decent chances. At the opposite end, the champions pilfered a second goal, C J O'Sullivan centred for Corkery to strike in the 11th minute. Subsequently, the standard of play dropped in the follow up play, both sides let down by poor shooting and niggling play. Coming up to the break, Lyre dug their heels in and enjoyed a spell of dominance, their best move allowed Brian O'Keeffe set up Denis Roche to point and a duplicate score from David Murphy cut the leeway 2-2 to 0-3 at the short whistle.
Though Jerry O'Sullivan added to Boherbue tally upon the restart, Lyre mounted a spirited rally through the efforts of Brendan Weathers, Cathal O'Donoughue and substitute Martin Kearney with Paudi Ryan and Murphy registering points.
Boherbue answered on back to back points to Jerry O'Connor, the impetus remained with Boherbue, O'Connor performed the spadework for Cork U20 panellist O'Sullivan volley home from close range for a green flag.
In fairness, Lyre never surrendered, Murphy showed his accuracy from pointed frees while a Kevin Tarrant point was cancelled by Boherbue substitute Denis McCarthy. With Boherbue keen to hold what they had on the scoreboard, they survived a major let off, defender Jack Daly scooped the ball off the goal line from an effort by Lyre substitute Alan Coughlan.
If converted, it would had made for an interesting last few minutes yet there was no denying Boherbue custody of the Duhallow silverware presented to Boherbue joint captains Niall Murphy and Kevin Cremin by Divisional Board Chairman Joe Kearns and Connie Tarrant (sponsors) presented the man of the match award to Boherbue's Andrew O'Connor.
BOHERBUE: K Murphy; J Daly, N Murphy, M Murphy; D Buckley, K Cremin, P Daly; M O'Connor, B O'Gorman; A O'Connor, J Corkery 1-1, C J O'Sullivan, J O'Connor 1-3 (1-0p, 0-2f), G O'Sullivan 1-1, A Murphy 1-1. Subs: R Moynihan for M O'Connor (34), D McCarthy for A Murphy (51), D Moynihan for P Daly (53), M O'Gorman for M Murphy (59), D Hickey for J O'Connor (60), C O'Riordan for C J O'Sullivan (60).
LYRE: S Murphy; J McAulliffe, K Sexton, N Twomey; B Weathers, D Kearney, B O'Keeffe; T Murphy, C O'Donoughue; P Ryan 0-1, K Tarrant 0-1, J Sexton; D Murphy 0-6f, C O'Keeffe 0-1, D Roche 0-1. Subs: M Kearney for P Ryan (39), E Buckley for N Twomey (39), A Coughlan for C O'Keeffe (51), H O'Connor for T Murphy(56).
Referee: D Casey (Scartaglen)
* The Castlemagner ground was in pristine condition and overall arrangements by the host club were first class with Newmarket Pipe Band adding to the occasion as did a hectic half time of entertainment were Go Games from young players drawn from Banteer/Lyre and Boherbue, their presence warmly greeted by the attendance.
* Boherbue and Lyre enter the county championship next month, some consolation and a possible good omen for Lyre, divisional runners up from the past two seasons Knocknagree and Dromtariffe recovered to land county titles. For Boherbue, perhaps a case of third time lucky en-route to a first time county.