Game 2 in our hurling quest this year sent us to Bandon to play our namesake- St. Patrick's. Unfortunately it was not to be a rewarding day for the boys of Gardiner's Hill.
Playing against the wind in the first half, our boys put in a sterling performance, battling and resolute, they held the Bandon school to a single point. This despite a Bandon fullback that had a fantastic puckout ability that time and again landed right down on Paul Long and Anthony McGuikin at fullback and centreback, assisted brilliantly by cornerbacks Tom O'Mahony and Cian O'Mahony. "I lar na páirce" Tadhg O'Connell, James Quinn, David Garvin and Ryan Long worked tirelessly to protect the fullback line as well as feed the forwards up the field. Up front, they didn't see much of the sliotar but never stopped working and trying, Jamie Hegarty in particular battled nonstop. Halftime score 0-1 to 0-0 (against the wind).
At halftime, the consensus between teachers and players was that now, with the wind, we had a great chance to take the victory in the second half. And we went about our business with great enthusiasm. Two goals in the opening 10 minutes by Joe Garvin (came on for an injured Jamie Hegarty), helped in the goalmouth area by Dean Twomey and Colin O'Brien after great work by Kieran Mills, Jake O'Donoghue and Kelvin O'Reilly set us up very nicely. A second point by Bandon left the tie at 2-0 to 0-2 with about 8 minutes remaining.
8 minutes of heartbreaking stuff to be honest as Bandon found another gear and began pressing very hard against our now weary and tired players. Despite Adam Lawlor's heroics in goal with a string of fine saves there was nothing he could do to stop the Bandon boys as they found the net 3 times in 6 minutes. Gardiner's Hill kept battling, aided by fresh legs in the form of Darren Thompson, John McKeone, Shane Barry and Fionnán O'Riordan. A late goal by Ryan Long from a 65 pulled it close again but Bandon weren't to be denied. Congratulations to them, commiserations to our boys who put in huge efforts, perhaps a game we left behind us.
Adam Lawlor, Tom O'Mahony, Paul Long, Cian O'Mahony, Tadhg O'Connell, Anthony McGuikin, James Quinn, Ryan Long, David Garvin, Jake ODonoghue, Jamie Hegarty, Kelvin O'Reilly, Dean Twomey, Kieran Mills, Colin O'Brien.
Subs: Joe Garvin, Shane Barry, Darren Thompson, John McKeone, Fionnán O'Riordan
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