It was a hard hitting game of hurling in O'Moore Park
Newcomers to the Premier Intermediate hurling grade – Slieve Bloom left MW Hire O’Moore Park on Sunday afternoon buoyed by a well deserved and hard earned win over the newly formed Colt Shanahoe.
Slieve Bloom 0-18
Colt Shanahoe 0-13
With Ben and Ciaran Conroy excelling, they took the game to Colt Shanahoe and after a hugely physical battle, they came out five point winners.
A teak tough game of hurling, Colt Shanahoe will look back on their nine first half wides while some key misses at vital stages of the second half also scuppered their chances.
Slieve Bloom hit seven points on the spin from the 37th to the 45th minute in what was a game defining spell for the victors.
Both teams were clearly up for the game with no quarter been asked or given early on.
James Keyes opened the scoring for Colt Shanahoe and although Ben Conroy levelled, Rhian Bergin landed over the first of his three first half points to make it 0-2 to 0-1 in favour of the newly amalgamated Colt Shanahoe.
Slieve Bloom then hit a purple patch with two points from Ben Conroy and one from Ben Shore pushing them into a 0-4 to 0-2 lead.
Colt Shanahoe were staying in touch but Slieve Bloom looked that bit sharper early on and another Ben Conroy free pushed them into an 0-5 to 0-3 lead after 16 minutes.
Conroy then pucked the score of the half from a tight angle and while they were moving well, Colt Shanahoe went on to puck nine first half wides.
James Keyes landed a second point for himself but Ciaran Conroy chipped in with two more points for Slieve Bloom before half time as they led 0-8 to 0-6 at the sounding of the half time whistle.
The competitive nature of the game didn’t fade in the second half either and while the scores were scarce in the opening minutes, the will to win wasn’t.
Rhian Bergin landed a ‘65’ but points from Tadgh Cuddy and Fearghal Burke put Slieve Bloom into a 0-10 to 0-7 lead after 40 minutes.
Ciaran Conroy really exploded into the game in the second half and in a game where there were a lot of frees, some of Conroy’s scores were superb.
One of his best put Slieve Bloom 0-13 to 0-7 in front and it was one of seven scores in a row that they got during a purple patch to put themselves 0-15 to 0-7 in front on 45 minutes.
They were on top all over the field and Colt Shanahoe, while making opportunities, just hadn’t the radar tuned in to the level required.
Slieve Bloom entered the final 10 minutes leading by six points while James Keyes was keeping Colt Shanahoe’s slim chances of a comeback alive with some excellent scores.
They got it back to a four point game but that was as good as it got as late points from Ciaran and Ben Conroy gave Slieve Bloom a fully deserved five point win.
Scorers: Ben Conroy 0-9 (0-5 frees and 0-1 ‘65’), Ciaran Conroy 0-5 (0-1 free), Ben Shore, Tadgh Cuddy, Evan Power and Fearghal Burke 0-1 each.
Team: Gavin Conroy; Enda Conroy, Tom Delaney, Sean Nolan; Shane Farrell, John Lowry, Gearoid Lowry; Evan Power, Ben Shore; Martin Delaney, Tadgh Cuddy, Darragh Delaney; Ciaran Conroy, Ben Conroy, Fearghal Burke. Subs: Ross Holmes for Gearoid Lowry (54m)
Scorers: James Keyes and Rhian Bergin (0-4 frees and 0-1 ‘65’) 0-6 each, Shane Bowe 0-1.
Team: Darragh Hiney; Ger Doolan, Brian Guilfoyle, Paddy O’Toole; Aaron McGowan, Henry Keyes, Robbie Delaney; Dayle Bergin, Shane Bowe; Rhian Bergin, Jack Delaney, James Keyes; Owen Joyce, Mark McDonald, Brian McDermott. Subs: Eoghan Brennan for Ger Doolan (H/T), Paudie McDonald for Shane Bowe (36m), Dylan Cuddy for Brian McDermott (44m), Shane Bowe for Owen Joyce (60m).
Referee. Ronan Devanney