NO JOY FOR COUNTY FINAL
In a low scoring encounter the two point advantage to Clara at the final whistle was probably a fair reflection on the way the game unfolded. Small margins were the only difference in what in truth could easily have gone O’Loughlins way..a different angle on that final delivery, the occasional fumble or a mere gust of wind at the wrong moment would ultimately mean that the Tom Walsh Cup was not going to St .Johns Park on this occasion. In fairness Clara too suffered the same ills in what was a poor game overall but recovered from those mishaps that bit better. Clara got a great start on the game going 1-3 to 0-2 in the first 10mins helped by a fine goal from Ciaran Prendergast who was one of two pre-match changes to their starting line-up. O’Loughlin Gaels took hold of the game for the next ten minutes with that man Martin Comerford lifting the troops with another massive performance. Martin’s performance along with good Brian Hogan assistance and a strong Paddy Deegan display opened up the game allowing for quick ball to move to the forwards where Mark Kelly and Sammy Johnston were causing problems in the Clara defence. A diagonal ball to the hard working Sammy Johnston allowed him the space to pick out Danny Loughnane with a high ball that he palmed to the net Diego Maradona style. The St. Johns crowd who gathered on the O’Loughlin road side of the park were feeling a little better after period of play, arguably the best of the match, which saw O’Loughlins draw level and go two points clear with two minutes of the half remaining. Clara to their credit saw the game changing and chose to smother the game. No space given and very little opportunity was afforded by the Clara defence who were happy to disrupt any flow the O’Loughlin forward line wanted to impose. O’Loughlins had survived the half on scraps the Clara defence were happy to give in frees and Mark Bergin was equally as happy to convert. With the wind in their backs O’Loughlins needed to keep their advantage but Clara finished the half the stronger and the sides went level at 1-9 apiece in a tense first 30mins.
The second half didn’t explode into life with both teams only managing four scores each but Clara taking the advantage with a goal from a loose ball in the O’Loughin Gaels defence four minutes into the half. A tussle for a high ball saw Eddie Kearns crash into the goal post after a wild overhead swing. The resulting scramble saw the ball reach the net while Eddie lay stretched on the ground. Not for the first time Eddie Kearns put his body on the line for the club and it won’t be for the last. The groundsmen at Nowlan Park however may be looking to replace the posts at the country end! It was disappointing to see but two fine saves from Stephen Murphy earlier could have meant the game was beyond reach. O’Loughlins fought as is to be expected of these lads and Andy Kearns stepped up to rally the troops with a brilliant performance from full back. Three occasions in the second half Andy rose to take ball in hand and clear his lines with precision ball to the hard working Martin Comerford. Martin gave it everything for his team and club. Emptied the tank and fought on through pain and exhaustion. When the final whistle sounded you could feel his heart sink and part of his soul was left on the field in Nowlan Park. A pure legend. It was gut wrenching when that final shrill sounded and although the players were emptied inside the large support that had been a very big part of this teams build-up flooded onto the field to give comfort. There was no hard luck. The boys did well..Clara are the victors but they know it could easily have been the other way around. Keith Hogan lifted the Tom Walsh Cup.. he and Brian played out a dual after a week-long build-up that saw the two brothers being the focus of much media attention. They were glad to get on with the game and both played well with neither one getting the better of the other… Only that Keith celebrates with his team mates. But not before an emotional embrace with his big brother at the games end. Only in GAA.
The year may have ended for the seniors with disappointment but the club is in a good place. This team will build from this experience and will come back stronger and more determined. With good people behind them and good support from a great club O’Loughlin Gaels will always be competing at the business end of the season for
Thanks to : S. Murphy, A Forristal, A Kearns, E Kearns, H Lawlor, B Hogan, P Deegan, M Bergin, S Mahony, D Burke, E Grant, M Comerford, S Johnson, D Loughnane, M Kelly, C Bergin, J Nolan, A O’Brien, B Leydon, P Butler, P Cantwell, S Parsons, D O’Connor, G Bryan, N Bergn, A Cantwell, S Cummins, J Doyle, T Gleeson, F Brennan, M Gibbons, G Kelly.
Manager: Aidan Fogarty. Selectors: Colin Furlong, Nigel Skehan, Derek Shelly, Michael Comerford.
BIG EFFORT BY A PROUD CLUB
There was a massive effort out in by a huge amount of people to prepare the club for one of the biggest days of the Kilkenny GAA year and O’Loughlin Gaels GAA. The players were fantastic and the management left no stone unturned in preparing them to be in prime condition. Helped by a focused executive the members all pulled together to show strong support. The supporters shop provided the white and green colours that festooned every vantage point around St. Johns parish thanks to the help of an army of volunteers who scaled lampposts, trees and buildings. The presence of young juvenile members and their families in Nowlan Park ensures that there is a strong future for our great club. The club is lucky to have such brilliant sponsors too – the main Sponsor of the senior teams Pat Carrolls has been avid supporter of our teams for many years with both club and business benefitting from the clubs rising profile. McDonagh Junction Shopping Centre looks after the clubs juvenile section and Newpark Eurospar and The River Court Hotel have also offered their along with a host of others. The club wishes to express it’s humblest gratitude to all those who have contributed to a great club…the mentors, members and sponsors. Continued thanks.
MINOR COUNTY FINAL SUNDAY
On Sunday our minors face city neighbours Dicksboro in what will be a repeat of last year’s County Final…and let’s hope the result will be repeated also. Both teams coasted through to the final with Dicksboro probably shading the favourites tag. It has all the makings of a classic and it’s another call to arms for the St. Johns support to get to Nowlan Park and cheer on our young stars. They’ve been training hard. They work is nearly done but will only be done once the final whistle sounds. Well done to a great management team in Manager Niall Bergin, selectors Mark Bergin and Davey Ronan, and team medic and physio Parick Corr. Up the’Loughs
DARTS FINALS TO BE HELD IN CLUB
Every Friday night for the last few months Kilkenny District Darts League has been held at O’Loughlin Gaels GAA Club. The clubhouse again demonstrates it’s capacity to host any event of any size and the long upstairs lounge is perfect to host this. On Friday evening October the 30th the Finals of the Darts Leagues will be played and the lounge will be lined with 10 dart boards with a large crowd enjoying the spectacle. Well done to Paddy Green yet again for catering for such events and continues to attract and improvise to cater for any event. To hire or organise your event contact Paddy on 0861298329
There was no winner of last weeks Lotto. The numbers drawn were 4,13, 16 ,28 and the bonus number was:2. Tickets can be bought from the usual selling agents or by asking at the clubhouse bar. Remember – if you’re not in; you can’t win the jackpot prize of €20,000.
EVENTS AT O’LOUGHLIN GAELS GAA
The capacity to hold events of any size or manner was demonstrated again at the weekend when the club hosted a Strictly Come Dancing fundraiser for Vespa Entertainments and Carrick Swans GAA Club. 1100 people attended the event that ran from 8pm to 2pm on Saturday night last. The carpark was full with a caravan of busses from the Carrick club and the cars overflowed unto the adjoining juvenile pitch making sure that anyone that came got in safely. The doors opened at 7pm and patrons enjoyed the O’Loughlin Gaels hospitality thanks to an army of volunteers who stewarded and manned the bars late into the night until all our guests were safely on their way home. Well done to all and thanks again for a massive effort.
U12s SOAK UP THE ACTIVITIES
The u12s headed to The Kilkenny Activity Centre for an end of year get together. The boys relished in the activities provided to come away soaked in muck and water in what was a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon. As we know these guys don’t care about tough conditions or hard work and they came through the day with big smiles on their faces. Well done to the boys on great year with the club and thanks to their mentors John Holohan, Sean Hogan, Brian Fox and Alan O’Meara