Nemo take down ‘Town

Nemo Rangers 1-12 Bishopstown 1-08

The blustery conditions proved a challenge to Nemo and Bishopstown in that second Cork SFC semi-final in Páirc Uí Chaoimh yesterday: both teams struggled for creativity and cohesion for long stretches, with a first half that suffered in contrast with the lively first game in the double-header.

Both teams kicked poor wides early on. Bishopstown faced the wind and tried to work the ball close to the opposition goal, while Nemo seemed caught between using the breeze for long-range points and feeding danger man Paul Kerrigan on the edge of the square.

A 12th minute pile-up in the Nemo goal, after which the ball was cleared, was the closest we came to entertainment in the opening quarter, as passes went astray, shots sailed wide and a single point was scored — by Kerrigan — in those 15 minutes.

Barry O’Driscoll added a point for Nemo from a 19th-minute free before Bishopstown opened their account with a Daniel O’Donovan free.

Kerrigan fisted another point after 23 minutes as Nemo went 0-3 to 0-1 ahead.

O’Donovan then drove a fine point into the wind to cut the lead to the minimum, but a good Luke Connolly point edged Nemo further ahead. Brian O’Callaghan had a ‘Town free before Kerrigan hit the score of the half, making good ground before driving over from close range.

It was 0-5 to 0-3 at the break. No cardiac patients in any danger of over-excitement.

On the resumption Bishopstown were livelier — Denis Crowley placed Sam Oaks near goal and Oaks hit the woodwork, Crowley blazing the rebound wide. David Hickey pointed for the men in maroon, but Barry O’Driscoll responded with a close-in free.

Alan Morgan’s fine strike from play meant Nemo were three up, 0-7 to 0-4 with 40 minutes gone, and another O’Driscoll free on 42 minutes widened the gap further.

From the kick-out the game took its decisive twist. Nemo won the ball and worked it up field, with O’Driscoll taking a shot from inside the 14-metre line. The ball squirted to the unmarked Alan Morgan, who poked home from close range — 1-8 to 0-4 with a quarter of the game left.

Credit Bishopstown, they kept fighting. Daniel O’Donovan hit back with a free and Fiachra Desmond pointed from long range as well, but Nemo looked much happier playing their patented possession game into the teeth of the gale.

In Paul Kerrigan they had the ideal ball-carrier, and he won the free that O’Driscoll converted to steady them at 1-9 to 0-6 with 10 minutes left.

Kerrigan then burned through for a point, and Connolly added another after a clever solo-run, leaving Nemo seven ahead with five minutes to go.

Denis Crowley touched home a long delivery for a ‘Town goal with three minutes on the clock and O’Donovan added a point two minutes later, but when they came knocking on the door late on, Crowley’s shot was blocked and Nemo swept upfield for Connolly’s insurance point.

A deserved win on balance but they will know in Trabeg they’ll have to improve.

Scorers for Nemo: P. Kerrigan and B. O’Driscoll (fs) 0-4 each, A. Morgan 1-1; L. Connolly 0-3.

Scorers for Bishopstown: D. O’Donovan 0-5 (0-3 fs); D. Crowley 1-0; B. O’Callaghan, F. Desmond and D. Hickey 0-1 each.

NEMO RANGERS: D.Farry; B. O’Regan (c), S. McKeown, A. Cronin Jr; C. O’Brien, K. Fulignati, A. O’Reilly; P. Morgan, D. Nation; D. Mehigan, A. Cronin Jr, B. O’Driscoll; L. Connolly, P. Kerrigan, A. Morgan.

Subs: J. Masters for A. Cronin Jr, 23; D. Niblock for D. Nation, 58.

BISHOPSTOWN: K. O’Halloran; N. O’Donovan, E. Byrne, M. Power (c); C. Dorman, J. O’Sullivan, D. Lester; A. O’Connor, D. O’Donovan; P. Honohan, D. Hickey, F. Desmond; B. O’Callaghan, D. Crowley, S. Oaks.

Subs: D. O’Connor for B. O’Callaghan, 49; E. Costelloe for D. Hickey 50.

Referee: C. Lane (Banteer).

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