Newtownshandrum 0-18 Kanturk 1-11
NEWTOWNSHANDRUM joined Douglas on top of Group A of the Co-op Superstores Cork Premier SHC after they defeated last year’s Senior A champions, Kanturk in Charleville on Saturday.
The league form of both sides suggested that the Duhallow men were slight favourites for this game, but Newtown threw the formbook out the window as they were never led, despite being reduced to fourteen men when Jack Herlihy picked up his second yellow card just after half-time.
The Avondhu outfit had been in the ascendancy since the beginning and they led by 0-10 to 0-8 when they lost Herlihy, who had been playing excellently. The large attendance waited for Kanturk to make the most of their numerical advantage, but they weren’t able to as Newtown, inspired by Tim O’Mahony, Conor Twomey and Jamie Coughlan, controlled the game.
At first, the sides were even after the red card, as Jamie Coughlan and Tim O’Mahony pointed frees for Newtown while Ian Walsh pointed for Kanturk. Then James Bowles saved brilliantly from Liam O’Keeffe and Alan Walsh, though O’Sullivan pointed the resultant ’65 to keep two points between them.
From there, Newtown took over as they hit the next five points in-a-row. Substitute Seán Griffin had a sweet point from play, Cormac O’Brien burst through for another before brilliant play from O’Mahony and Jerry Lane set Coughlan up for another. Coughlan then followed up with two placed balls and all of sudden Newtown led by 0-17 to 0-10 with seven minutes to go.
Kanturk were shellshocked and though O’Sullivan finally stopped the rot with his sixth point, there was to be no comeback. Instead O’Mahony landed a long range free and claimed a heroic catch at the edge of the square. Alan Walsh did manage to sneak in for a late goal, but it was a case of too little, too late.
From the off the favourites tag seemed to weigh heavy on Kanturk as their tactic of playing it through the lines malfunctioned while Newtown were more efficient in their play. The Duhallow side struggled with their puck outs, as Newtown chased down every short effort while everything that went long was gobbled up by Twomey, O’Mahony and Herlihy.
O’Mahony and Jerry Lane gave Newtown an early advantage before Brian O’Sullivan got Kanturk off the mark with his first free. O’Sullivan then traded scores with David O’Connor in advance of Conor Griffen giving Newtown a 0-5 to 0-2 lead at the end of a feisty opening quarter.
Ryan Walsh finally had Kanturk’s first score from play with their first shot from play but further scores from Twomey and Cathal Naughton pushed the Avondhu side four clear. O’Sullivan narrowed the gap with another free, but Lane extended Newtown’s lead again. Then came the game’s first goal chance as Naughton found himself straight through on goal only for Grantis Bucinkas to save well.
The save briefly sparked Kanturk to life as they managed consecutive scores for the first time in the game through O’Sullivan and Lorcán McLoughlin, but Twomey would have the final word on the half as his second point gave his side a 0-9 to 0-6 interval lead.
Coughlan had Newtown’s first score from a free on the resumption but scores from Aidan and Alan Walsh soon reduced the margin to two points. Then came Herlihy’s red card that inspired his teammates to victory. Newtown now face reigning county champions, Midleton, next weekend while Kanturk’s season will be on the line when they play Douglas.
J Coughlan 0-6 (0-3 f, 0-1 65), T O’Mahony 0-3 (0-2 f), J Lane, C Twomey 0-2 each, C O’Brien, D O’Connor, C Griffen, C Naughton and S Griffin (0-1 each).
B O’Sullivan 0-6 (0-4 f, 0-2 65), Alan Walsh 1-1, Aidan Walsh, R Walsh, I Walsh, L McLoughlin 0-1 each.
J Bowles; K O’Sullivan, P O’Sullivan, M Ryan; J Herlihy, T O’Mahony (c), C Twomey; C O’Brien, D Hawe; J Coughlan, J Lane, D O’Connor; C Naughton, R Geary, C Griffen.
S Griffin for Naughton (42), J Twomey for Griffen (50), M Bowles for Coughlan, (inj, 57 mins), M Thompson for O’Connor (60).
G Bucinkas; J McLoughlin, R Walsh, P Walsh; T Walsh, D Browne (c), J Browne; B O’Sullivan, L O’Neill; Lorcán McLoughlin, Aidan Walsh I Walsh; L O’Keeffe, Alan Walsh, C Walsh.
C Clernon for O’Neill and C Mullane for L McLoughlin (both 50).
Mark Maher (St Finbarr’s).