30 Apr 2014

The Craanford star continues to rise

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Craanford 3-7 St. Leonards 1-1


On the back of a great Roinn B title last summer and this year’s Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Rackard League Minisevens Hurling title, Craanford look like they will do very well in the new revamped top division this year. St. Leonard’s proved to be tough opposition in this final but it would have taken an exceptional team to get one up on the Craanford boys in this form.


Right from the off, they looked sharp and it wasn’t long before they were peppering St. Leonard’s goal with shots. Aodhan Whitty scored a nippy goal and Eamonn Doran pointed to open up an early lead. Pat Doyle was unlucky not to add a quick second goal when he blasted just wide. St. Leonard’s were not there to just make up the numbers however and they surprised Craanford with an early goal of their own through Jamie Sheehan. This only seemed to spur Craanford on though and it was Eamonn Doran who replied with another Craanford goal. Patrick Kavanagh caught the resultant St. Leonard’s puckout and extended the lead further to five points. Emmet Cullen bravely led a St. Leonard’s fightback but the Craanford defence was also similarly inspired and did well to keep the dangerous Jamie Sheehan under wraps when he looked for his second goal. Eamonn Doran soloed through and riddled the net with a powerful blast to put Craanford further ahead. High on confidence, he put another over the bar soon after. St. Leonard’s got a point when Jamie Sheehan twisted and put it over the bar. It looked as if the Craanford juggernaut was reaching full steam as the half finished out with  Aodhan Whitty and Pat Doyle getting  two good points to open up a half time lead of 3-5 to 1-1.


The second half was similar in many ways to the first. St. Leonard’s kept playing the ball into Jamie Sheehan who had to be blocked down by Aodhan Whitty to deny a goal. Craanford kept attacking and Shane O’Grady had to cover his goaline to make a good catch and clearance from a dangerous ball. Joseph Conroy made a great save to deny Jamie Sheehan once more as St. Leonard’s refused to give in. Michael Hennessy got a great hook in on Patrick Kavanagh. The game could have swung in any direction. It was a long time before Eamonn Doran sent over a steadying free to reassure Craanford again, yet even then St. Leonard’s again came close when Emmet Cullen shot just wide on his knees. St. Leonard’s could have got back into it if it was not for the consistent organised defending from Craanford. Eamonn Doran got the final score of the match to finish it at 3-7 to 1-1. Another fine win for the Gorey District boys that we will all keep a close eye on as they now take on the big guns in the 15-a-side competition.


Craanford: Joseph Conroy, Eoin Byrne, Jack Curran, Eamonn Doran, Pat Doyle, Brendan Green, Kevin Hyland, Aidan Kavanagh, Patrick Kavanagh, Ciaran McLoughlin, Padraig O’Donoghue, Brendan Tobin, Aodan Whitty


St. Leonards: Conor Twomey, Shane O’Grady, Emmet Cullen, Michael Hennessy, Arron Whelan, Dylan Ryan, Jamie Sheehan, Patrick Sinnott, Matthew McKillen, Liam Ryan, Shane Ryan