The Roscommon Hurlers made the long journey to McKenna Park, Ballycran yesterday to play Down in the Round 2 of the Allianz Hurling League Division 2B but unfortunately they returned home empty handed.
By Robert McConn
In good weather conditions and on a good pitch Roscommon, playing with a slight breeze in the first half, had the better of the early exchanges of this match. Robbie Fallon pointed from play in the first minute, followed by a brilliant point from Cathal Kenny from the right wing. After ten minutes the Rossies led by 0-5 to 0-3 with points from Jason Kilkenny, Naos Connaughton and Robbie Fallon. Down at this stage settled and scored four unanswered points. However the visitors rallied near the end of the first half scoring four points – two from Naos Connaughton and a point each from Jason Kilkenny and Robbie Fallon. Roscommon went in at half time leading by 0-9 to 0-8.
The second half was evenly contested with both sides trading points and were level on five occasions. Mid way through the second half Down started to pull away despite Roscommon’s best efforts. Gareth Johnson, who has been a great servant to Down Hurling over the years, was introduced and found the back of the net with five minutes to go. Fair play to the Roscommon men they battled on and Adrian Murphy netted on the stroke of full time but it was too little too late. It ended Roscommon 1-16 Down 1-21.
Roscommon showed a big improvement from last week’s performance and played well in stages. Roscommon gave away a lot of scoreable frees and Down’s Danny Toner punished them with ten points from frees.
Best for Roscommon were Michael Beirne, Shane Curley, Jason Kilkenny, Robbie Fallon and Naos Connaughton. Best for Down were Danny Toner and Conor O’Prey.
Team and scorers: Jerry Fallon; Michael Beirne, David Loughnane, Pat Nolan; Shane Curley (0-2, 2 frees), Eamon Flanagan, Peter Kellehan (C); Connor Coyle, Hugh Rooney; Adam Finnerty, John Coyne (0-1), Jason Kilkenny (0-2); Cathal Kenny (0-1),Robbie Fallon (0-6, 5 frees), Naos Connaughton (0-4).
Subs used: Adrian Murphy (1-0) for Kenny, Gearoid Egan for Coyle, Gary Fallon for Robbie Fallon.