Silver Hill Foods U17 Hurling League Division 1 Cup Final
Last Wednesday night at Entekra Monaghan GAA Centre of Excellence, Cloghan, Lisbellaw’s U17 team out hurled Castleblayney with a display of power and precision to take the U17 League Cup crown.
Though the conditions were cold as ice, the Erne boys turned up the heat on their opponents by scoring nine goals, seven of which came in the first half.
The first goal arrived immediately from the throw in, with Luca McCusker hitting a rasper to the Blayney net after 20 seconds.
Although Paudie Heavin responded with a point for Blayney, Lisbellaw had the ball in the net again a minute later through Tom Keenan.
In the eighth minute, Luca McCusker helped himself to a second goal, and now his team was 3-0 to 0-1 ahead, and Blayney’s task was looking ominous already.
Between the 13th and 18th minute, the Ernemen turned the oven temperature up to gas mark 5 with a goal and two points. First, Luca McCusker struck over a free, then Aiden Flanagan scored another white flag from play, and finally Tom Keenan ran through the heart of the Blayney defence to bury the ball in the bottom corner of the net.
Blayney temporarily cooled matters down with a Ciaran Duffy free, but then Tom Keenan fired up the oven again with two more goals for Lisbellaw between the 23rd and 26th minute.
Ben Corrigan tagged on another point to leave the score 6-3 to 0-2 at half time to Lisbellaw, and well on their way to the promised land.
Corrigan continued his rich vein of form after the break with two more points, before Luca McCusker struck over a monstrous free from 90 metres out to leave the crowd present in raptures, and Lisbellaw 6-6 to 0-2 ahead.
In the 7th minute, Dara McPhillips decided he’d get in on the act with a close range goal, followed by a point just two minutes later.
James Hughes worked hard to win the ball back from Blayney in midfield, before running through the middle of the park to slot over a neat point from the 20 metre line.
Following another Dara McPhillips point on 15 minutes, Oisin Murphy crashed home Lisbellaw’s eighth goal, and this was soon followed by another green flag for Luca McCusker just two minutes later.
Blayney were completely out-fought and out-thought all night, but they did manage one more point from Joey Hughes at the death, their only score of the second half.
LISBELLAW: Oisin Monaghan, Conal Sweeney, Ronan McGurn, Mark Johnston, Oisin Jackson, Aiden Flanagan 0-1, Peter Rafferty, Ben Corrigan 0-3, Dara McPhillips 1-2, Conrad Strain, James Hughes 0-1, Tom Keenan 4-0, Luca McCusker 3-3 (1f).
Subs: Eamon Lynam for Ronan McGurn, Don Corrigan for James Hughes, Ethan McPhillips for Dara McPhillips, Matthew McMahon for Conrad Strain, Oisin McPhillips for Mark Johnston, Feidhlim O’Connor for Ben Corrigan, Ruairi Moore for Oisin Jackson, Oisin Murphy 1-0 for Aiden Flanagan, Liam Moore for Peter Rafferty.
CASTLEBLAYNEY: Zach McArdle, Ryan Buckley, Senan O’Brien, Caleb McArdle, Thomas Keenan, Joey Hughes 0-1, Mikey Carville, Paudie Heavin 0-1, Ciaran Duffy 0-1 (1f), David Irwin, Cillian Hanratty, Conall Moorehead, David Moorehead.