Newmarkets minor hurlers were defeated in the championship semi final by Croke Rovers, 4-9 to 1-11, played in ideal conditions at Castlemagner on Saturday last.
After a tentative start, Newmarket settled and hit the front through John Lane before Ian Flanagan added a second point in the eighth minute. Croke Rovers got off the mark with a point but John Lane replied with a Newmarket point within a minute. Croke Rovers hit the front when they scored the games opening goal after thirteen minutes. Bryan O’Connell restored parity with a point but a brace of points edged the home side in front again. Newmarket who hurled well throughout the half reduced the arrears through a John Lane point to end the half behind by 1-3 to 0-5 at the interval.
Bryan O’Connell pointed within a minute before Croke Rovers struck for a second goal. Within two minutes, Newmarket were back on level terms when a long range free from John Ryan landed in the square and Robert Stack was on hand to convert to the net. Ten minutes into the half Newmarket hit the front, when John Ryan converted a long range free. Croke Rovers rose to the challenge and hit a purple patch in the next five minutes scoring two goals and four points to take a firm grip of the contest. The second goal came despite a spectacular save from Newmarket goalkeeper, Danny Quinlan as the subsequent rebound found the net. John Lane pointed for Newmarket as the game entered the final ten minutes. The sides then exchanged four points with Ian Flanagan and John Lane on target. Newmarket tried gallantly to the end but were unable to find a way to their opponents net. John Lane scored the final point of the game but proceedings ended with victory for the home side 4-9 to 1-11.
The Newmarket team was:
|William O’Flynn||David Kelly||Brendan Stack|
|Alan Forde||Conor Cronin||Billy Daly|
|John Ryan (0-1)||John Lane (0-6)|
|Bryan O’Connell (0-2)||Robert Stack (1-0)||Andy Twomey|
|Eddie Allen||Kieran Lehane||Ian Flanagan (0-2)|
|SUBS: Michael O’Leary, Paul Verling, Damien Kelly|