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Newmarket GAA

Seniors secure important opening win over Kiskeam

The all-Duhallow clash of Newmarket and Kiskeam on Saturday night in Kanturk drew a big crowd for what was the first round of the Bon Secours Senior A football championship.

With the importance of an opening win at stake, the early stages of the contest were cagey, dominated by slow build-up play. A Conor O’Keeffe free on two minutes opened the scoring, with a Kiskeam brace giving them the lead a few minutes later. A Barry O’Connor point from play restored parity and O’Keeffe found his second score to push Newmarket briefly ahead. Kiskeam then entered a purple patch, registering the next three points to give themselves a 0-03 to 0-05 advantage on 17 minutes. The last ten minutes of the half belonged to Newmarket though as the rattled off five unanswered points through Hugh O’Connor, Paudie Allen, Ryan O’Keeffe (2) and Conor O’Keeffe, to hold a three point difference at the break, in what was a tense first period.

Playing into a strong diagonal wind in the second half, Newmarket started well, pushing themselves out to double scores with points from Ryan and Conor O’Keeffe. The gains were wiped out soon after following a pair of points from the opposition. Newmarket continued to create scoring chances with a Hugh O’Connor free and a Conor O’Keeffe point on 40 minutes restoring the five point advantage. While Kiskeam reduced the arrears to four on 43 minutes, Newmarket had their goalkeeper Josh O’Keeffe and defender Aidan Browne for preventing two certain goals. A well taken Hugh O’Connor point on 52 minutes created some breathing space and it could have been more when a Michael Cottrell goal chance flashed narrowly wide. As is the case on many an occasion, the opposition struck straight back with an unstoppable goal of their own, to leave just two between the sides with six minutes remaining. To their credit, Newmarket responded well with Conor O’Keeffe scoring on the next play. A frantic few final minutes were rounded off with a coolly struck Ryan O’Keeffe 45 to close out the 0-15 to 1-08 win. Newmarket now look forward to taking on Béal Átha’n Ghaorthaidh in three weeks time, who also won their group B encounter against Clyda Rovers on Saturday night in Coachford.

The Newmarket team and scorers…

Conor O’Keeffe (0-06, 2f), Ryan O’Keeffe (0-04, 1×45), Hugh O’Connor (0-03, 1f), Paudie Allen (0-01), Barry O’Connor (0-01).

Josh O'Keeffe
Mikey Browne Gavin Forde Paudie Allen
Aidan Browne T. J. Brosnan Bart Daly
Mikey Cottrell Cathal Browne
Darren O'Keeffe Kevin O'Sullivan Barry O'Connor
Conor O'Keeffe Hugh O'Connor Ryan O'Keeffe
Subs: Paddy Browne for TJ Brosnan (30), John Ryan for Barry O'Connor (42), Donal Hannon for Kevin O'Sullivan (44), Dave Cottrell for Cathal Browne (49)

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