Kilmurry Ibrickane bridged a nine year gap after they were crowned 2016 U21 Clare Football Champions defeating Lissycasey by two points.
Kilmurry Ibrickane 1-13
Jamesy McConigley reports
Kilmurry Ibrickane got off to a dream start, Dermot Coughlan dissected the Lissycasey defense with a lung busting run, he shoveled off the ball to Keith Sexton who duly fired past the helpless Killian Normoyle in the Lissycasey goal. Brian Cahill struck back almost instantly for Lissycasey when he landed a quality point for his side.
Lissycasey were forced into making two changes from the side that defeated Shannon Gaels/ Killimer last Friday, Michael Nagle pulled up in the warm-up with a groin injury and talisman Paraic Mc Namara was involved in a car accident during the week leading up-to the final.
Inter county star, Keelan Sexton who has been extremely instrumental for club and county in 2016 needed to shine if Kilmurry-Ibrickane wanted to be triumphant. He fed his name sake, Keith Sexton to widen the gap for them.
Two quick points by Killian Normoyle and Conor Finucane cut the deficit to the minimum with 14 minutes played. Finnucane raised a green flag moments later when he stylishly punched past the on-rushing Darragh Moloney, this turned the tide as Lissycasey then led by two points with seventeen minutes on the clock.
Conor Finucane and Keelan Sexton exchanged scores right before the interval, leaving Lissycasey 1-07 to 1-04 in front of their adversaries.
Kilmurry Ibrickane shot out of the traps in the second half with Darren Callinan opening his account after the restart. Keith Sexton who bagged 1-01 in three games on the trot released Ciaran Conway into a one-on-one situation but Normoyle had enough to turn Conway’s effort away to safety, Conway did eventually fire over from the resulting play.
Seventeen year-old Dermot Coughlan levelled matters with a little more than twenty minutes remaining. The positional switch of Coughlan to midfield paid dividends for the Bricks as they won plenty more primary possession with him out in the middle of the park.
Keelan Sexton and Darren Callinan converted a free each for the West Clare side just moments before Brian Cahill was dismissed. Cahill was adjudged to have used his foot to up-end Ronan Murrihy. Youngster Coughlan added salt into the gaping wound of the Lissycasey men as he edged his side into a three point lead.
Ryan Griffin impressed throughout the 60 minutes in Corofin today and grabbed his side a lifeline, his shot was pushed into the air by Moloney but his hand wasn’t strong enough to keep Griffin’s effort out of the net.
But the extra man told, Keelan Sexton racked up a hat-trick of points and help Kilmurry-Ibrickane into a three point lead as the clock ticked into time added on.
Lissycasey were on time borrowed and couldn’t find that vital goal they searched for late on. Michael O’Malley lofted over a point from 40 meters out but their goose was cooked as Rory Hickey sounded the full-time whistle. Kilmurry-Ibrickane now boast thirteen titles in the competitions fifty two year history.
Kilmurry-Ibrickane: Darragh Moloney; Diarmuid Downes, Ciaran Morrissey, Niall Mc Gannon; Cillian O’Flaherty, Ciaran Killeen, Dara Pender; Keelan Sexton, Andrew Shannon; Paudie Murrihy, Dermot Coughlan, Ronan Murrihy; Darren Callinan, Keith Sexton, Ciaran Conway. Subs: Kevin Tubridy for P Murrihy, Ciaran O’Neill for O’Flaherty.
Lissycasey: Killian Normoyle; Daire Hanrahan, Niall Mc Carthy, Roy Griffin; Seamus Collins, Ryan Griffin, Levi Howard; Oisin Hanrahan, Brian Cahill; Conor Finnucane, Conor Talty, Sean Kennedy; Michael O’Malley, Eoghan O’Leary, Aaron Griffin. Niall Meere for O’Leary, Ciaran Doohan for A Griffin.
Referee: Rory Hickey (Éire Óg)