Ilen Rovers 2-9 Carbery Rangers 1-9
EARLY goals were the key as Ilen Rovers took victory in the county SFC West Cork derby at Castlehaven yesterday.
Playing against the strong wind in the first half, the Baltimore outfit had an excellent start as Dan Mac Eoin’s opening point was followed by a goal from Seán O’Donovan and though Carbery Rangers responded, a second green flag from Tom Bushe had the Baltimore/Church Cross outfit in a 2-1 to 0-3 lead.
By half-time, they still retained a four-point advantage, 2-2 to 0-4, and, though Carbery Rangers reduced the deficit to two points during the second half, Ilen were able to settle again and pushed on, with Mac Eoin’s points vital for them.
With the elements against them, Ilen were patient from the off and their goal in the fourth minute was excellent. Jack Collins, Dermot Hegarty, Donal Collins and Conor Harrington were all involved as the ball was worked to O’Donovan, who slotted home smartly.
Ross were unable to start either of the Hayes brothers, John or Séamus, or Robbie Kiely due to injury but John O’Rourke was influential as they settled with three consecutive points.
However, on 14, Ilen struck again. This time, O’Donovan was the creator with an excellent pass from the left corner into the path of marauding wing-back Bushe. Though Ronan Milner saved his first effort, Bushe was able to convert the rebound.
Though O’Rourke replied with his third for the Rosscarbery side, Mac Eoin responded in kind and Ross were wasteful otherwise, kicking nine first-half wides. However, Ilen could have punished them further as Bushe’s ball behind the defence gave Mac Eoin a chance but he couldn’t connect with a soccer-style attempt.
On the resumption, Ilen made use of the wind as they scored the first three points of the second half, Peter O’Driscoll, Mac Eoin and Conor O’Driscoll all on target as they moved seven clear, though Ross did go close as ark Hodnett hit the post with a goal effort.
However, Ross began to enjoy more of the play. After John Hayes sent over a free with his first touch, they had a goal from Darragh Hayes when another John Hayes free broke inside.
The lead was down to two when John Hayes got his second but Ilen didn’t panic and gained some breathing space again as Mac Eoin got his fourth, a free, before sub Joseph Hickey also scored.
John O’Rourke’s run and point, his fourth, close the gap, but Mac Eoin replied again and Ross’s cause wasn’t helped as Mark Hodnett was sent off. In injury time, John Hayes got his third to make it a two-point game again but Ross couldn’t create a goal chance, Mac Eoin rounding off the win with his sixth.
Scorers for Ilen Rovers: D Mac Eoin 0-6 (0-2 f), S O’Donovan, T Bushe 1-0 each, Peter O’Driscoll, C O’Driscoll, J Hickey 0-1 each.
Carbery Rangers: D Hayes 1-1, J O’Rourke 0-4, J Hayes 0-3 (f), M Hodnett 0-1 (f).
ILEN ROVERS: D O’Sullivan; D O’Driscoll, S Minihane, P Minihane; T Bushe, D O’Donovan, J Collins; Peadar O’Driscoll, C O’Driscoll; Peter O’Driscoll, D Collins, D Hegarty; C Harrington, D Mac Eoin, S O’Donovan.
Subs: J Hickey for C O’Driscoll (39-41 and 48-50, blood), A O’Sullivan for Collins (50), Hickey for Hegarty (51).
CARBERY RANGERS: R Milner; J O’Riordan, T O’Rourke, M O’Donovan; B Shanahan, P Hodnett, C Hennessy; J Fitzpatrick, M Hodnett; B Hodnett, P Hurley, A Jennings; C O’Donovan, J O’Rourke, D Hayes.
Subs: R Kiely for B Hodnett (30), S Hayes for Hurley (half-time), R Hegarty for O’Donovan (40), J Hayes for Jennings (42, black card).
Referee: M Collins (Clonakilty).