Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Senior Hurling: Guinan Saves Galway with Late Free.

Galway 1-17 Wexford 2-14

There was great excitement as the senior hurling championship produced another draw, and uncannily, like last week, it was a total of 20 points for each team at the end of the game.  Holding a three point lead with time running out, Galway looked like they had the game in hand, but Wexford rallied in the last few minutes to take the lead and Eoin Guninan showed a lot of composure to level it up with a free from 45 yards for the last strike of the game.

Galway looked good for the points, but held their breath as Eoin Guinan
pointed a last minute free to salvage a draw.

The first half was tightly contested, though Eoin Guinan was on form putting several long range frees over the bar from distance.  One was from below the press box on one side of the field and two from under the scoreboard on the other.  Offalyman, Brian Watkins, was also on form at wing back for the tribesmen coming away with the ball on several occasions.  Galway got out of the gates well.  Early on it looked like Galway may have been setting themselves up on a comfortable cushion on which to rest their laurels.  It was four points to one after 10 minutes.  Eoin Gunian pointed for Galway to get things going and Tom Bulger added to the tally.  Kevin Sheerin opened the Wexford account after 8 minutes with a free, and the Slaneysiders eventually settled in to the game.  Eoghan Kavanagh and Sheerin brought Wexford level.  Barry McNamara converted a lovely score for Galway and Guinan added another.  Tom Maloney then answered with a great score for Wexford, and with Galway ahead by three points Wexford scored a goal that was the result of persistence on the part of the scorer, Stephen Maher.  Galway failed to clear a ball that should have been dealt with, and Maher dived to put the ball into the net at full stretch. Galway pointed four times to end the half, to two for Wexford and it was 1-7 to Wexford and 0-12 to Galway at the break.

The Wexford Senior Hurling Team of Boston.
The second half was marked for 2 goals, both had an element of opportunism associated with them.  The first was scored by Stephen Maher for Wexford.  A Kevin Sheerin free came off the upright and Maher was on hand to put the rebound into the net.  With Wexford ahead by two points now, Guinan put another fantastic point over the bar, this time from play.  Then came the Galway goal.  The tribesmen had won a free and Gunian, thinking quickly, played a short one to Kevin Canty as Wexford’d defenders were not yet prepared.  Canty buried the ball into the far corner and Galway were back up again.  The sides traded scores, Guinan added another fine free to his tally, and John Moylan added one to Galway’s lead to make it three points coming into the final stretch.  Wexford’s Jamie Keogh was shown a red card for striking the helmet of Kevin Canty and it looked like Galway had the matter in hand with 5 minutes to go.  Perhaps in a football match leaders sit back and rely on defending to see out the game, not so in hurling where the intensity has to be kept up throughout the field.  Mike Moloney pointed twice and Kevin Sheerin put a free over the level matters, all in the space of two minutes.  Then Eoghan Kavanagh, to the cheers of the Wexford crowd, was almost cast in the role of last minute hero with the go ahead point, only for Guinan to pop over the high pressure free at the end.  Galway will feel that they should have had it, but at the same time were fortunate to secure the point.

Referee:  Jason Long (Corcaigh)

Man of the Match:  Eoin Guinan

Galway:  M. Mulrooney, D. Shaw, M. Lennon, B. Watkins, S. Nolan, J. Kinsella, B. McNamara, S. Corry, J. Moylan, K. Canty, T. Bulger, M. Brooks, E. Guinan.  Wexford:  E. Spruhan, M. Walsh, D. Redmond, B. Dalton, M. Moloney, J. O’Neill, T. Moloney, P. Nolan, K. Sheerin, J. Kehoe, E. Kavanagh, P. Kehoe, S. Maher.

By Rory O'Donnell

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