Westmeath Under 17 Division II Hurling League

Final Southern Gaels 2-16 Cullion /Delvin 1-10

Southern Gaels, Athlone, Westmeath Under 17 Division Two League Champions 2023.
Back Row (l-r); Anthony Mannion, Diarmuid Morgan, Rian Barkey, Ciarán Morgan, Sean O’Neill, Rory Hatton, Seán O’Donoghue, Dara Shortall, Aaron Power, Josh Baine, Matthew Turner, Evin Kinahan, Leon Macken, Gearóid Ó Duibhir (Manager) and Thomas Ó Duinn.
Front Row (l-r); Fergal O’Connor (Selector), Cillian Geary, Cillian Keegan, Brian Gill, Ruairí Ó Duibhir (Captain), Luke Duffy, John Fleming, Oisín O’Donoghue, Max O’Sullivan, Dean Burns, Stephen O’Connor and Kyle Mahon.

Southern Gaels, Athlone, Westmeath Under 17 Division Two League Champions 2023. Back Row (l-r); Anthony Mannion, Diarmuid Morgan, Rian Barkey, Ciarán Morgan, Sean O’Neill, Rory Hatton, Seán O’Donoghue, Dara Shortall, Aaron Power, Josh Baine, Matthew Turner, Evin Kinahan, Leon Macken, Gearóid Ó Duibhir (Manager) and Thomas Ó Duinn. Front Row (l-r); Fergal O’Connor (Selector), Cillian Geary, Cillian Keegan, Brian Gill, Ruairí Ó Duibhir (Captain), Luke Duffy, John Fleming, Oisín O’Donoghue, Max O’Sullivan, Dean Burns, Stephen O’Connor and Kyle Mahon.

Southern Gaels won their first title of the year, resulting in the club winning a trophy for their 50th Anniversary year.

An excellent first half performance, against the wind, ensured their victory which was well deserved. The game was played at a wonderfully prepared Pairc Chiarain, Athlone last week.

Cullion/Delvin enjoyed the perfect start with three unanswered points showing no ill effects of their long journey south.

Luke Fennellon was instrumental in their early dominance and the home side looked in trouble, however, Sean O’Neill and Oisín O’Donoghue steadied matters and Kyle Mahon and Sean O’Donoghue supplied vital points.

Cullion/Delvin hit back with a goal as a long-range effort deceived Josh Baine in the goals to lead after the first quarter. Matters changed as Gaels piled on the pressure and four points were followed by goals from Ciaran Morgan and O’Neill to put the home side firmly in control. Stephen O’Connor and Aaron Power came more into the game for the home side and their efforts set up an additional three points before halftime. The visitors matched this to leave the home side 2-10 to 1-6 to the good at halftime.

On the resumption Cullion/Delvin were straight into action and forced a fine save from Josh Baine in the Gaels goals. They followed up with two quick fire points from play and looked set to control the game. Luke Coll and Jack Smith delivered excellent ball to their forward division and only some top-class Gaels defending kept them at bay.

By the tenth minute the home side steadied the ship and points from Sean O’Neill and Cillian Geary had them back in control. The remainder of the half was low scoring though evenly contested. Geary added two frees and Dean Burns a point for Gaels and Coll and Smith a point each for the north Westmeath side. But for their slight lapse in the second quarter Cullion/Delvin would surely have been a lot closer at the call of time.

Delvin had an excellent full back in Mickey Sinnott and Luke Fennellon gave a commanding performance at centerfield. Gaels were well served by captain Ruairí Ó Duibhir whose touches at centerfield set up many scores. Sean O’Neill was scorer in chief with excellent support from Cillian Geary. Anthony Mannion and Matthew Turner shut out most threats from the opposition forwards. Dara Shortall and Rory Hatton were ever reliable with Dean Burns also turning in a fine hour.

Mentors Gearóid Ó Duibhir and Fergal O’Connor had the side well prepared and they now look forward to the championship with great confidence.

Southern Gaels; Josh Baine, Anthony Mannion, Matthew Turner, Stephen O’Connor, Rory Hatton, Dara Shortall, Oisín O’Donoghue, Dean Burns (0-2 ), Ruairi Ó Duibhir, Sean O’Neill (1-4 ), Sean O’Donoghue (0-2 ), Aaron Power, Cillian Geary (0-6 ), Ciaran Morgan (1-0 ) and Kyle Mahon (0-2 ).Subs; Diarmuid Morgan (O’Neill ), Leon Macken (Power ), Luke Duffy (S O’Donoghue ) and Evin Kinahan, Rian Barkey, Brian Gill, John Fleming, Max O’Sullivan and Cillian Keegan

 

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