Knockavilla Donaskeigh Kickhams advanced to the semi-final of the Tipperary Co-Op West Senior Hurling Championship when they defeated Cappawhite 3-10 to 4-5 on a very wet and miserable evening in Clonoulty on Saturday last.
When Michael Shanahan pointed with 10 minutes to go, Kickhams were eight points up and looked to advance with ease to the semi-final, but two Jerry O’Neill goals from frees in the 24th and 27th minutes of the second half, the latter just getting over the line, ensured a close finish to the game. Kickhams opened the scoring with point from a side-line cut from Brendan Ryan. Cappawhite were quick to reply and centre back Tom Treacy levelled up the game.
The conditions certainly did not help with both teams struggling to get a hold on the game. The first goal came on the 8th minute, a well taken effort from Rian Doody following good Cappawhite pressure.
Both sides were guilty of missing chances before Michael Shanahan got his first point and midway through the half Niall O’Brien scrambled the ball to the Cappawhite net after good work from Brendan Ryan. With ten minutes to half time the sides were level for the second time as Jerry O’Neill pointed for Cappawhite.
Kickhams then opened up a two point lead which was somewhat against the run of play as Cappawhite were guilty of missing chances as the wide tally rose. The sides would go in level at the break with two quick points in the space of a minute from Jerry O’Neill and Russell Quirke. Kickhams introduced Shane Morrissey and Pa O’Brien for the start of the second half and with the aid of the wind the game started to turn in their favour.
First Johnny Ryan pointed from a free and within the space of two minutes Brendan Ryan had the ball in the net twice as Kickhams raced into a seven point lead.
Jerry O’Neill tried to keep Cappawhite in touch but Kickhams now seemed well in with Johnny Ryan and Brendan Ryan adding further points.
David Butler was introduced for the Kickhams half way through the half and he pointed almost immediately to give them a commanding ten point lead in the game.
Cappawhite to their credit never gave up and were constantly trying to create opportunities, at this stage trying to work goals to get them back into the game.
With twelve minutes gone Jerry O’Neill hit the roof of the Kickhams net to give a glimmer of home to his team.
Michael Shanahan looked to have dispelled that hope two minutes later when he pointed to leave his side eight points up, but Cappawhite responded with two more goals from Jerry O’Neill frees.
The third goal came from a free that was hit short and won by Michael Ryan who was then fouled before O’Neill crashed it to the net. Kickhams though to their credit saw out the game as Cappawhite tried everything to get a fifth goal that would surely have won the game for them. Best for Kickhams were Brendan Ryan, Johnny Ryan, Eoin Carew and Michael Heelan.
Best for Cappawhite were Tom Treacy, Paddy Julian, Jerry O’Neill and Rian Doody.
Kickhams: P Ryan, J Shanahan, M Heelan, P Hayes, A Ryan, E Carew, J Ryan(0-2,0-1f), P O’Dwyer, P O’Dwyer, T Comerford, D Breen, M Shanahan(0-2), N O’Brien(1-1), B Ryan(2-2), C Horan, P Slattery(0-1), Subs used: Shane Morrissey(0-1), Pa O’Brien David Butler
Cappawhite: M Buckley, D O’Dwyer, P O’Neill, N Ryan , M Leahy, T Treacy(0-1), C McCarthy, D Barry, P Julien, M Ryan, J O’Neill (3-3), K Stapleton, R Quirke(0-1), R Doody(1-0), J McGrath Subs used: D O’Neill