A match that was hotly contested in the first half turned into a one-sided show of strength from Kiskeam against Nemo Rangers in the Premier IFC yesterday.
At half-time in sunny Macroom, it was all to play for with Nemo just a point adrift of their opponents, but the city side were stunned by the ferocity of play from the Duhallow side, who hit all the important early second-half scores to set themselves up for a resounding and thoroughly deserved win.
Nemo manager Billy Morgan bemoaned the loss of key players but had no complaints about the outcome, acknowledging that Kiskeam were the better side. “It’s fair to say at half-time I thought we were in with a right chance,” he said, “ultimately I suppose we were missing too many players, short six, and big players as well. Still, not taking away from Kiskeam, they were very good in that second half, we conceded an early goal and couldn’t get back into the game as we had in the first half after they scored their first goal. In a way, we were probably unlucky to be behind at half-time, but they came out for the second half and were simply much better.”
The story of the first half was in complete contrast to the second. Kiskeam started strongly with points from the free-scoring David Scannell (two) and Michael Herlihy and led four points to two at the midway point before Conor Allen pegged them back with his side’s third point.
Kiskeam did score a remarkable goal from Scannell after a fine pass from Herlihy after 20 minutes but Nemo finished strongly with points from Kieran Weldon, Gavin Irwin and Conor Horgan, to leave Kiskeam just a point to the good at 1-4 to 0-6.
That all changed within seconds of the restart when Gene Casey was sent free by Adrian Carroll and blasted home a second goal from point-blank range. Sean Linihan, Tom O’Sullivan and Herlihy added points before Nemo could draw breath and the winners were on their way with a seven-point advantage.
They held on to that through the remaining minutes of the third quarter and significantly Nemo failed to score in the last 15 minutes.
It was all Kiskeam during that spell, Scannell with a brace and Sean Linehan scoring too to add to a quite magnificent third goal from Robert Carroll.
Kiskeam manager John Herlihy was delighted: “We conceded a few late scores in the first half to allow Nemo back into it and it was important to have a good start to the second half,” he said.
“We came out very determined with a good tempo, a good pace and the goal immediately after half-time obviously settled us, gave us a very good building block and we never let them back into it from there. We got a couple of good scores immediately after the goal and there was some real good attacking play through the middle on top of excellent support play, so it was a good performance.”
D Scannell 1-7 (two frees), G Casey, R Carroll 1-0 each, M Herlihy, S Linehan 0-2 each, T O’Sullivan, M Casey 0-1 each.
C Horgan 0-3, K Weldon, R Kennedy 0-2 each, G Irwin, C Allen 0-1 each.
A Casey; D O’Connor, P O’Leary, DJ Casey; AJ O’Connor, D Linehan, S Linehan; T Dennehy, M Casey; G Casey, B Dennehy, A Carroll; D Scannell, M Herlihy, T O’Sullivan.
D Fitzgerald for D O’Connor (half-time), S O’Sullivan for B Dennehy (45), R Carroll for T O’Sullivan (51), J Dennehy for DJ Casey, D Fitzgerald for AJ O’Connor (both 57), P Cronin for J Dennehy (59, injured).
D Farry; D Barrett, E Weldon, B Twomey; J Donovan, S Martin, K Weldon; M Dorgan, C Kearin; S O’Brien, C Dalton, J Kerins; R Kennedy, C O’Donovan, C Horgan.
K O’Donovan for C Kerins (50).
D Murnane (Macroom).