Portroe added the Senior Hurling League Division 2 trophy to their North Division title defeating Killenaule by an injury-time point in a enthralling contest that went all the way to the wire in ideal conditions in the Ragg on Saturday afternoon, winning 1-17 to 0-19
Portroe produced a second half rally to snatch victory with an injury-time point.
This decider turned out to be a shoot-out between Portroe’s marksman John Sheedy and Killenaule’s John ‘Bubbles’ O’Dwyer, with Sheedy coming out on top. O’Dwyer registered the first score for Killenaule and added a 65 after Portroe’s goalie Darren Gleeson did well to push around a post to go two points clear.
In the 3rd minute Portroe’s first attack produced a goal when a speculative shot by James Ryan out on the end-line saw Killenaule goalie Gerry Kennedy misjudge the flight of the sliotar turning it into his own net. Portroe with their tails up then added three points through John Sheedy, Kevin O’Halloran and James Ryan to go four clear after 6 minutes.
Killenaule responded with a points from Niall Bergin and John O’Dwyer only for James Ryan and Kevin O’Halloran to cancel them. Killenaule once again hit back with John O’Dwyer and Daniel Guinan, only for Portroe with points by Jimmy Cramer and John Sheedy opened up a 1-7 to 0-6 lead with ten minutes of the half remaining. However, over the final ten minutes Killenaule turned this game around with three points came from John O’Dwyer and one each by Declan Fanning and James Ryan to lead 0-12 to 1-7 at half-time.
After the changeover Portroe had three frees from John Sheedy by the 36th minute to restore the North Champions lead. John O’Dwyer levelled it for a third time, before John Sheedy put Portroe back in front only for Killenaule to level for a fourth time through Cathal Bergin.
Portroe went four points clear through Michael Sheedy and Dinny Hogan with John Sheedy added a brace. Killenaule hit back with scores from John O’Dwyer and substitute Pat Kerwick to reduce the leeway to two as the game reached the final minutes.
John Sheedy put Portroe three clear, but Killenaule refused to drop their heads and hit back with points from Niall Bergin and a brace from Michael Doyle and to put just a single points between the sides as both goals came under fire. Portroe goalie Darren Gleeson made two reflex saves to deny Killenaule a goal, but Michael Doyle scored a point from the rebound to restore parity for a fifth time.
Extra-time looked on the cards when two minutes into injury-time Portroe forced a ‘65’. John Sheedy kept his composure to send this pressure placed ball between the posts for a dramatic victory.
Portroe: Darren Gleeson, Christopher O’Riordan, Noel O’Halloran, Dermot O’Halloran, Michael Creamer, Simon Kelly, Colm Gleeson, Jimmy Creamer (0-1), Kevin O’Halloran (0-2), Justin Conroy, James Ryan (1-2), Dinny Hogan (0-1), John Sheedy (0-12; 7 frees + 65), Michael Sheedy (0-1), Shane O’Brien
Substitute: Mark Gennery for J. Conroy (45)
Killenaule: Gerry Kennedy, Aaron Conron, Tony Doyle, Stephen Browne, Joe O’Dwyer, Paddy Codd, Peter Kennedy, Cathal Bergin (0-1), Jonathan Gleeson, Niall Bergin (0-2), Daniel Guinan (0-1), Michael Doyle (0-2), Declan Fanning (0-1), Kenneth Browne, John ‘Bubbles’ O’Dwyer (0-10; 8 frees + 65)
Substitutes: Matthew O’Donnell for K. Bergin (34), Pat Kerwick (0-2) for A. Conron (45)
Referee: John McCormack (Knockavilla/Donaskeigh Kickhams)