*Feakle’s Shane McGrath holds onto the sliotar despite Jonathan Clancy’s best efforts. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill
A five star performance from Shane McGrath steered Feakle to a comfortable win over Clarecastle on Saturday afternoon in Cusack Park.
Venue: Cusack Park, Ennis
Named at midfield, McGrath lined out at corner forward and when the final whistle sounded he had contributed 4-10 of his side’s tally
A blistering start saw the East Clare outfit 1-4 to 0-1 up after five minutes, McGrath finding the net following good work by Martin Daly. That left the score at 1-5 to 0-2.
Ten minutes later the winners had added 1-4 without reply opening a lead of twelve points as the teams went to the first water break of the afternoon.
When play resumed Clarecastle raised a bit of a gallop as they hit four unanswered points but Feakle responded with a similar tally and when the half time whistle sounded the East Clare men were 2-12 to 0-7 in front.
Any hopes of a Clarecastle rally were quickly killed off on the resumption as Martin Daly and Shane McGrath struck for goals in the second and third minutes respectively of the new half.
From here on the only question to be answered concerned the size of the winner’s margin. Just before the second half water break McGrath struck again, this time drilling a penalty past Jamie Coughlan. The free was awarded for a foul on full forward Martin Daly and the goal left the score at 5-14 to 0-9 with a quarter of an hour remaining.
To their credit Clarecastle battled to the end. Three unanswered points was the response to McGrath’s penalty goal. Three minutes from the end of normal time Clarecastle struck for their first goal which came from substitute Conor Halpin and two minutes into the additional time, Stephen Ward struck for their second goal.
A dominant Feakle team had the final say when Gary Guilfoyle pointed just before Neil O’Brien sounded the full time whistle.
McGrath was the star of the show while Evan McMahon, Eoin Tuohy, Martin Daly, Steven Conway and Oisin Donnellan made valuable contributions.
For a young Clarecastle side who were guilty of thirteen wides, Darragh Healy, Jonathan Clancy, Cian Galvin, Killian McDermott and Eoghan Wallace worked hard throughout.
Feakle Scorers: Shane McGrath (4-10, 1-0 penalty, 0-7 frees); Oisin Donnellan (0-3); Martin Daly (1-0); Steven Conway (0-2); Killian Bane, Gary Guilfoyle, Eoin Tuohy (free), Austin McMahon, Eoin O’Connor (0-1) each.
Clarecastle Scorers: Stephen Ward (1-2); Comor Halpin (1-1), Bobby Duggan (0-4, frees) Oisin Casey (0-2). Killian McDermott, Jonathan Clancy, Niall Galvin (0-1) each
1: Eibhear Quilligan
2: Ger Hanrahan
3: Evan McMahon
4: James Noonan
5: Kilian Bane
6: Eoin Tuohy
17: Eric Conway
12: Austin McMahon
9: Gary Guilfoyle
10: Oisin Donnellan
11: Enda Noonan
15: Steven Conway
13: Raymond Bane
14: Martin Daly
8: Shane McGrath
21: Eoin O’Connor for E. Noonan (47)
22: Justin Nelson for Hanrahan (55)
16: Jamie Coughlan
26: David Tuohy
2: Darragh Healy
3: Pat Kelly
7: Jonathan Clancy
6: Stephen O’Halloran
9: Eoghan Wallace
5: Cian Galvin
8: Killian McDermott
10: Niall Galvin
11: Bobby Duggan
12: Lee Brack
20: Colin Brigdale
14: Oisin Casey
15: Stephen Ward;
17: Conor Halpin for Brack (37)
13: Marc McAulife for Casey (40);
4: Cillian Casey for Brigdale;
Referee; Neil O’Brien (O’Callaghans Mills);