Second half secures Na Fianna win
Na Fianna 4-17 Kerry/Donegal 2-07
While the teams went into the break with a goal between them, it was a second half surge that secured the win for Na Fianna in this Ladies GAA contest on Sunday at Gaelic Park.

They outscored their rivals 3-10 to 1-3 in that time, with a two goal outburst from stars Fiona McHale and Molly O’Rourke critical. Kerry/Donegal used a strong closing period of the first half to pull within three, but they had little in way of answers when Na Fianna finally got their impressive team moving.

The first half had a series of scoring waves to its story line.  K/D had two points from the impressive Sarah Grealis to open the game, but seven of the next eight scores to catapult into the lead. It included a goal from Jeannine Rynne after 12 minutes when Mary O’Rourke was involved in the buildup.

Molly O’Rourke (two), McHale (two) and Mary O’Rourke had points in the mix, and by the 21st minute Na Fianna had a 1-6 to 0-3 lead.

K/D responded by closing out the first half with a scoring flurry. Clare Hannon snatched a goal while Catherina Brady fired over a point to cancel out a McHale effort to leave just three between the sides as the half arrived.

Na Fianna added to their lead with scores from substitute Joanne McKenna to open the second half before another Molly O’Rourke point. K/D responded with three of the next four points, with Clare Hannon, Catriona Brady and Jennifer Moran all scoring, but they had a glorious goal chance that went a begging with 12 minutes gone.

Denise Dunnion was released on goal by Brady, but her low shot screamed a yard wide of the left post. It was a let off that Na Fianna would punish them for.

Kelly McCormack had a point from play before McHale and Molly O’Rourke put back to back goals together to push the lead out even further, 3-11 to 1-7.

Hannon did grab K/D’s second goal with 10 minutes left, but it proved to be their final score as Na Fianna added a further 1-5 to their tally with captain Aine Dwyer getting goal number four.   

Jesse Garcia was very impressive at the back for the winners, with Katrina Lynch and newcomer Noelle Tierney also prominent.  The O’Dwyers dominated the middle of the park. Fiona McHale moved to the middle for the second half and had a very impressive hour in her first game of the year.

Katrina Sullivan, despite not scoring, did a lot of quality running up and down the wing, with Molly O’Rourke having an excellent outing.   Joanne McKenna and Kelly McCormack had important contributions off the bench.

For Kerry/Donegal, Benny Touhy had a good outing and could not be faulted for the goals. Louise Lilly battled throughout the hour and did well when moved to Molly O’Rourke late on in the game. Catherina Brady, Anita McKenna, Sarah Grealis -- who was excellent and started the game on fire -- Clare Hannon and Ali Kelly also had some very good moments.

Na Fianna: 1 Alison Leydon, 2 Jesse Garcia, 3 Katrina Lynch, 4 Ashley Brophy, 5 Stephanie Tierney, 6 Noelle Tierney (0-1), 7 Imelda Mullarkey, 8 Aine O’Dwyer (1-1), 9 Fiona Dwyer, 10 Brianna Tierney, 11 Fiona McHale (1-5), 12 Katrina Sullivan, 13 Jeanne Rynne (1-0), 14 Molly O’Rourke (1-5), 15 Mary O’Rourke (0-2). Subs: Aisling Toolin, Shannon Spillane, Joanne McKenna (0-1), Kelly McCormack (0-1).

Kerry/Donegal: 1 Benny Touhy, 2 Niamh Britton, 3 Una Burke, 4 Kathleen Hickey, 5 Siobhan Neville, 6 Louise Lilly, 7 Jennifer Moran (0-1), 8 Michelle McVann, 9 Catherina Brady (0-2), 10 Sarah Grealis (0-2), 11 Ali Kelly, 12 Kelly Roche, 13 Denise Dunnion (0-1), 14 Anita McKenna, 15 Clare Hannon (2-1). Subs: Thea Clarke, Marie Cassells.

Player of the game: Fiona McKenna (Na Fianna).
 Storm stalls hurling

The senior hurling outing had a very eventful 15 minutes before it became a victim of the storm that raged through the Bronx on Sunday.

The sides swapped four points to open the outing before an Aiden Roche score from the right side gave Galway a slim lead. That was cancelled out when a long ball to the Galway 21 from Aaron Griffon was picked up by Dermot Lyng and dispatched to the net.
Dave Ellis had his third point of the early going with a free, but that was cancelled out by an excellent tally by Darren Reilly to give Offaly a 1-3 to 0-4 lead.

Then the rain came. The canopy over the burger stand was deposited on the elevated subway as the wind was driving while the rain pelted down. The game was stopped.

The Bronx certainly took the brunt of the storm that passed through the area, and it was decided that the game would be called off in the interest of safety. It is now scheduled for Wednesday night, with both sides able to retain their weekend players for the rematch. The lineouts from Sunday were as follows:

Galway: 1 Alan Whelan, 2 Liam Butler, 4 Matt Silke, 5 Donal Keane, 6 Michael Sexton, 7 Tadgh O’Callaghan, 8 Kieran Geary, 9 Aiden Moylan, 10 Glen Galvin, 11 Dave Ellis, 12 Tom Fitzgerald, 13 Kevin Keehan, 15 Aiden Roche.

Offaly: 1 Finbarr Flood, 2 Niall McAuley, 4 Aaron Griffon, 5 Colin Egan, 6 Brendan McGourty, 7 Eunon McKillop, 8 Darren Reilly, 9 Michael Coady, 10 Dermot Lyng, 11 Stephen Browne, 12 Donie Broderick, 13 Peader Hickey, 15 Eoin Drumgoole.
Strong showing for Donegal

Donegal 1-10  Kerry 0-5
Donegal propelled themselves back into playoff reckoning with an impressive win over a Kerry side that continues to slide into dangerous territory after a win over Tyrone and a draw against Cork a month ago.

Those results now seem like a decade away, such has been the turn around. Donegal used a dominating team performance to completely shut down the Kingdom with the full back line very impressive. Darren Strong in the middle of the park with four points from play and a lot of good work led the victory charge.

While Kerry had the first point of the game from Paul O’Connor, Donegal had control of the first 15 minutes of the game. Points from CJ Molloy and Michael Mone gave them the lead, and when Ciaran Tavey was fouled off the ball Donegal had a penalty which the lethal forward drilled to the net. He followed it with an excellent point for a 1-3 to 0-1 early advantage.

Tavey was now on his third defender, with Shane Enright given the task of trying to manage him. The sides both had two points in the last 10 minutes of the half, but that kept Donegal ahead by five. The play of PJ Flanagan, Strong and Tavey was giving the side optimism for the second half.

Strong had two points for Donegal to open the second half. They sandwiched an O’Connor free for Kerry. His first came after two minutes while the second arrived at the three quarter mark.

In the time passed, Tony McMahon made a very good save from Ryan O’Sullivan when he went down to his left and then scooped up the ball before clearing to safety. Denis Donnelly and Tavey both had points, but on the 20 minute mark the game had an ugly uprising, the result of which saw Shane Langan and Anthony Kelly being shown straight reds. Kelly could feel a little harshly judged, but a Donegal player was guilty of an infraction.

When the dust cleared Tavey and Strong added points and Donegal cruised to victory.        

Donegal will be delighted with the win.  James Huvane was excellent in marking jobs, while Mark Downes and Anthony Kelly also showed well throughout.

PJ Flanagan at number six, Darren Strong, who fired over four lovely points from play, and Tom Hardwick, who battled all day and won a lot of them, were excellent.  Ciaran Tavey, who continues to prove that he is one of the best if not the best forward in New York, had a telling contribution.

Kerry will be hard pressed to find anyone who played up to their potential. Niall Corbett, Bingo Driscoll, who was in the wars and took quite a few heavy knocks, and sub Denis Donnelly were the few brave ones.

A moment of silence was observed before the game for the mother of the Molloy family who passed away.  Connie, Frank and CJ are a huge part of the New York GAA. We offer our condolences to the family. May she rest in peace.

Kerry: 1 Martin O’Connor, 2 Darren Courtney, 3 Anthony Glacken, 4 Niall Corbett, 5 Dermot Lyng, 6 Shane Enright, 7 Shane Carty, 8 Denis Carroll, 9 Dave McSweeney, 10 Conor O’Leary (0-1), 11 Bingo Driscoll, 12 Gary Culhane, 13 Ryan O’Sullivan, 14 Paul O‘Connor (0-03), 15 Dermie Foley. Subs Dennis Donnelly (0-1), Vinnie Gavin, Paddy Curtain.

Donegal: 1 Tony McMahon, 2 James Huvane, 3 Mark Downes, 4 Anthony Kelly, 5 Ray Keenan, 6 PJ Flanagan, 7 John Bingham, 8 Darren Strong (0-4), 9 Tom Hardwick, 10 Fergal Delaney, 11 Brian O’Connor, 12 Michael Mone (0-1), 13 Ciaran Tavey (1-4), 14 Alan Danaher, 15 CJ Molloy (0-1).

Man of the match: Ciaran Tavey (Donegal).

Referee: Sean Jones.
Physical victory for Cork
Cork 1-15 Cavan 0-12
On a game that was not dirty per se, but certainly physical, four red cards were handed out and Cork cruised to a win that might have been far more difficult if the sides were left to more reasonable numbers.

When you run a red light you deserve a ticket, so Garth Kelly will have no qualms about his fine. He was not alone, however, when he was swinging, but the Cork player received no punishment.

The first two men to go, Brendan Reilly and Shane Mannion, will agree that they had problems with each other, but they were as shocked as anyone that they received reds. The whole place was stunned as the ref consulted with umpires to hear the story and then gave them their marching orders.

The final player to take an early bath was Eoghan Carew. He did not strike out but received a straight red; the player involved with him, Jason Kelly, received a yellow. A yellow for both would have sufficed.

Cavan went the final 10 minutes with a two man disadvantage and Cork kicked over the final three points of the game to secure the win.

The game opened with a piece of Laois brilliance.  In the first minute Brendan Quigley found Paraic McMahon wide on the 50 close to the sideline. McMahon put on the burners and headed as the crow flies for goal. When he reached the 14 he blasted to the roof of the net.

Gavin McIntire and Ger McCullough followed it with points and Cork had a 1-2 to nil lead. Cavan awoke to the problems and they rattled off three points of their own, with Eoghan Carew, Eugene Keating and Paddy Smith having a wonderful score.

After a Kelly free from 55 yards out extended Cork’s lead, Cavan again had a trifecta to get within one. Carew had two points from frees, while Keating had his second of the game after good work by Rory Dunne set him up.

Cork closed out the half with a strong showing as they annexed three of the final five points of the half, with McCullough taking over the free taking as Sean Purcell was on international duty with the Ireland, New York soccer team and Benny Reilly was having little luck in his first three chances. It left the side ahead 1-7 to 0-8 at the break.

Carew and Keating had two Cavan points to open the second half, but they were sandwiched by two McCullough frees off the ground. Reilly and Mannion took their walk at this point, and Kelly and Carew swapped points to keep the Cork lead at two.

Cavan were getting within one, but each time the Rebels were able to move up the field and extend it back to a pair. Garth Kelly then arrived to the scene when Denis McCarthy was fouled 17 minutes in to the contest, and he was joined by two Cork defenders. When the bell sounded to end round one Kelly had a red, but he was not fighting with himself.

Brian Argue and Conor Doherty added to Cork’s scoring total as they started to dominate based on numerical superiority. James Moynagh did have a brilliant point for Cavan, but it proved to be their final score.

Carew received his marching papers and Cork added to their total with scores from Francie Cleary, Reilly and Jason Kelly. Reilly also had a goal chance but his left footed shot screamed across the goal with a minute left in the contest.

Cork will be happy to be back on the winning trail. Ciaran Kiley, Alan Raftery and Brian Argue did a lot of work at the back, while Brendan Quigley was far happier in the middle of the park in his second game out. Gavin McIntire covered quite a bit of ground on the 40, while Jason Kelly certainly is a brilliant player when he concentrates on football.

Ger McCullough did well from frees, but the side seems to have the best two defenders in New York, Paraic McMahon and Conor Doherty, playing out of position.

Cavan will look back and say they would love to have been given a fair shake at this one. They were having trouble getting level, but there was still loads of time left when the first sending off arrived.

Alan Hearty continues to excel in the goal. Paul Lambe, Kieran Martin and Nobbie Smith did well at the back after the initial shock.
Rory Dunne was moved to the middle of the park when Kevin Smith had to go off and had some confident moments, while Eoghan Carew who also spent a lot of time in the middle. Eugene Keating, who did very well winning possession on some hard fought long balls, and James Moynagh in a cameo role were the best up front.

Cork: 1 Gary Lowney, 2 Denis McCarthy, 3 Jonathon McDermott, 4 Ciaran Kiley, 5 Steve Garvey, 6 Alan Raftery, 7 Brian Argue (0-1), 8 Brendan Quigley, 9 Shane Mannion, 10 Conor Doherty (0-1), 11 Gavin McIntire (0-1), 12 Jason Kelly (0-3), 13 Benny Reilly (0-3), 14 Ger McCullough (0-4), 15 Padraig McMahon (1-1). Subs: Sean Lordon, Francie Cleary (0-1).

Cavan: 1 Alan Hearty, 2 Ciaran Martin, 3 Alan Carolan, 4 Nobbie Smith, 5 Brendan Reilly, 6 Rory Dunne, 7 Paul Lambe, 8 Kevin McGeeney, 9 Kevin Smith, 10 Frankie Barry, 11 Eoghan Carew (0-6), 12 Kevin Carden, 13 Enda Lenard, 14 Paddy Smith (0-1), 15 Eugene Keating (0-4). Subs: Patsy Martin, James Moynagh (0-1), Garth Kelly.

Man of the match: Gavin McIntire (Cork).

Referee: Lawrence McGrath.