*Clarecastle coach Tommy Guilfoyle celebrates with captain Rory O’Connell. Photograph: Chris Copley

CLARECASTLE were crowned Berwick L.P. U21B football champions on Saturday afternoon when they recorded a one point win over Western Gaels in a final played before a good attendance at Kildysart.

Clarecastle 0-8
Western Gaels 0-7
Venue: Kildysart

The result provided a proud Clarecastle clubman and former club chairman John Callinan with the opportunity, on behalf of Beerwick Law Practice of which he is a director, to present the trophy to team captain Rory O’Connell, one of three brothers in the Clarecastle squad.

The Magpies’ superior physical strength proved key to the team’s merited victory on a day which saw their coach Brian Troy pitted against a side which drew players from his native O’Currys club coached by his friend and team colleague for many years, Sean Haugh.

The first half was evenly contested with points exchanged a few times. The winners were first to score through their captain but points from Shane Browne and James McNamara had the West Clare peninsula outfit ahead for the only time in the game at the end of the opening quarter.

Points from O’Connell and James Doherty saw the winners restore their one point advantage before Shane Browne levelled the tie with the half time whistle approaching. Another James Doherty point edged the winners one clear, 0-4 to 0-3 and this was the position at half time.

Clarecastle had created a couple of goal chances in that first half but were unable to find the net.

The new champions had the better of the third quarter exchanges and kicked four unanswered points through Cian Galvin (free), James Doherty and Rhian Sheridan (2) to open a five point lead.

The Western side, made up of players from Naomh Eoin, O’Currys and St. Senans Kilkee refused to lie down and they finished the tie with four unanswered points, all from the boot of Shane Browne.

With the final action of the tie, Browne stepped up to a long range free but his effort just dropped short and referee Joe Kelly sounded the final whistle to spark off celebrations amongst the Clarecastle players, mentors and supporters.

The result completed a great day for the Clarecastle club as their under 16 hurlers had captured the B championship earlier in the day when recording a 1-17 to 1-6 win over the Bodyke/O’Callaghans Mills combination.

Clarecastle; Fionn Morgan; Nathan Casey, Aaron Hayes,, Niall Brigdale; Darragh Hickey, Conor Halpin, Conor Whelan; Cian Broderick, Cian Galvin (0-1); Conor Griffin, James Doherty (0-3), Rory O’Connell (0-2), Captain; Rhian Sheridan (0-2), Oisin Whelan, Sam Browne;

Subs” Cian O’Dell for O Whelan; Mark Griffin for C. Whelan; Evan O’Connell for S. Browne;

Western Gaels: Eoin Daly (Naomh Eoin); Kevin O’Meara (St. Senans), Darragh O’Shea (St.Senans); Jonathan Clancy (O’Currys); Kevin Roche (Naomh Eoin), Adam Haugh (Naomh Eoin), Patrick Clancy (O’Currys); Darragh Keane (O’Currys), Jack McNamara (St.Senans) 0-1; Adam Foley (Naomh Eoin), Shane Browne (O’Currys) 0-6, Fergal Keane (Naomh Eoin); Daniel McNamara (St.Senans), Eoin Kelly (O’Currys), Fionn Doherty (Naomh Eoin);

Sub: Cian McInerney (St. Senans) for Roche;

Referee; Joe Kelly, (Cooraclare)

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If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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