St. Patrick’s, Downpatrick – 2-2
St. Patrick’s, Keady – 0-6
Our Year 8 and Year 9 hurlers are the Danske Bank McGreevy Cup winners for the second time in three seasons. In subzero conditions, with rain, hail and almost snow beating down before the match began, it was clear that this was going to be a tough test for both sides. Downpatrick adapted better to the wintery conditions, putting on an excellent defensive display with two goals from full forward Luke McCabe proving to be the difference in the end.
For most of the game Keady looked to be in control with some skillful hurling on show in the poor conditions from Sean Burke, Finn Fox and Rory Grimes but there was strong resistance from the Downpatrick’s defence of Leigh Morgan, Sean McCarthy and Dara Coulter with some outstanding close range saves from Cian Clarke in goals. This solid defence proved impenetrable at times, with the score line at half time being only 0-1 to 0-2.
After half time Keady took control of the game stretching their lead to 0-4 to 0-1with a point each for Charlie McArdle and James Mallon, but over the next 10 minutes Downpatrick pressed on with some excellent teamwork within the midfield / half forward line providing service to Luke McCabe who grabbed two goals. Shortly after the two goals, Noah Rodgers found himself with time on the ball, a quick and skillful hurler, Rodgers beat his marker and slotted the ball over the bar to extend Downpatrick’s lead to four points.
Keady pressed strongly over the final 10 minutes searching for that vital goal to win the game. But Downpatrick’s strong full back line of Niall Murray, Sean Murphy and Gerard Doran made sure that nobody got through on goal, only allowing Keady’s Charlie McArdle and James Mallon to secure a further two points from distance, proving crucial on securing the win for the Downpatrick side with the final score Downpatrick – 2-2 Keady – 0-6.
Downpatrick : C Clarke, N Murray, S Murphy, G Doran, E McKinney, S McCarthy, L Morgan, D Coulter, N Rodgers (0-1), DJ Farrell, M Rodgers, R McMullan, R Byres, L McCabe (2-1), F Magee (SUBS) R Gilchrist, L Morris, E Barry, C McCourt, S Connolly, A Clarke, D Mageean, E Fitzsimons
Keady: C O’Hagan, C Hughes, J Crilly, R Taylor, F Fox, S Burke, J Loughran, J Mallon (0-2), C McArdle (0-2), R Grimes (0-2), D Harvey J McNally, S og McNaughton, P Mc Keever, T Fox. Subs: D Feeney for S og McNaughton
Referee : Paddy Branagan (Clonduff Shamrocks)