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Minor Hurlers Impress with League Play-off Win over Cobh.

posted 1 Oct 2013, 16:19 by Willie Horgan
                          The Brian Dillons Minor Hurling team qualified to meet Clondrohid in the semi-final of the Rebel Og County Minor Hurling League with an impressive, 3-15 to 2-6, victory over Cobh, in the play-off, which was played under the lights out in Pairc Diolunaigh on Tuesday night, 1st October, 2013.
                       Cobh started the game in style ,applying plenty of pressure on the Brian Dillons defence in the opening few minutes but, tenacious tackling by the homesters defenders forced the Cobh forwards into a number of wide balls. Then, in their very first attack, Brian Dillons took the lead after five minutes when excellent midfielder, Andrew Whyte, billowed the back of the net for a tremendous goal. However, Cobh continued to play attractive hurling , scoring two fast points to leave them trailing by the minimum margins after ten minutes playBrian Dillons went two points ahead, in the fourteenth minute when Eric O"Donoghue pointed after receiving an excellent pass from Brian Manning..  Passionate defending by the Brian Dillons defenders prevented Cobh from adding to their total until they scored their third point after twenty one minutes. It was noticeable at this stage that Brian Dillons were gaining the upper hand and a point by Kieran Delaney ,after a great assist from Adam Cotter,, a minute later led to a flurry of scores. Eric O"Donoghue and Keith McCormick , both added points which pushed Brian Dillons ahead, 1-4 to 0-3, after twenty six minutes. The Cobh defence were under immense pressure at this point of the game  and were forced to concede a twenty three metre free ,with three minutes remaining in the first half. With the Cobh defenders, lining the goal, expecting Eric O"Donoghue to tap the free over the bar for a point, the Brian Dillons player cleverly sent in a piledriver of a low shot which went skidding along the slippery surface and ended up in the net , 2-4 to 0-3. The first half scoring ended with both sides adding a point each in injury time with Eric O"Donoghue, again scoring for Brian Dillons which left his side ahead, 2-5 to 0-4.
              The second half had Brian Dillons playing with the advantage of the blustery breeze and in the opening ten minutes they had increased their lead with points from ace scorer, Eric O"Donoghue (three) and excellent half back, Keith McCormick....2-9 to 0-4. Cobh were intent on getting back into the game and a fine goal ,after a fine build -up, left them trailing 2-9 to 1-4, after twelve minutes of the second half. From the puck out that man again, Eric O"Donoghue, who was in devastating form, added another fine point for Brian Dillons to which Cobh replied with a pointed free , three minutes later. Brian Dillons were hurling splendidly at this stage with their brilliant defenders snuffing out any dangerous moves by the Cobh forwards, and they increased their lead with further points from Keith McCormick and Eric O"Donoghue (free), with twelve minutes left in the game. Then, the game was put well beyond Cobh"s reach, one minute later, when the commanding  Brian Dillons full back, Darren McGrath, stormed out of defence and sent a massive strike towards the Cobh goalmouth, which the goalkeeper failed to hold in the wet conditions, for a remarkable goal....3-12 to 1-5. Fair play to Cobh for not throwing in the towel, at this stage, and they got through the Dillons defence for another goal and a point but, the winners had the final say when Man-of -the-Match, Eric O"Donoghue swung over three further points, one from a free, to close the scoring.     Scorers for Brian Dillons were; Eric O"Donoghue, 1-11 (1-3 frees ); Keith McCormick, 0-3; Andrew Whyte,1-0; Darren McGrath, 1-0; and Kieran Delaney, 0-1. The Brian Dillons team lined out as follows; Mark Kelly; Ryan Burns; Darren McGrath; John Kenny; Keith McCormick; Michael Feehan; Andrew Whyte; Adam Cotter; Brian Manning; Eric O"Donoghue; Mark Sheedy; and Kieran Delaney;   Subs; Eoin Casey for Mark Sheedy (45 mins.); Thomas McGrath for Michael Feehan (58 mins.) ; Subs not used; Kyle Lynch and Kane O"Brien.