Hard work as Turlough do enough to rescue title hopes

Turloughmore's Seán Loftus battling for possession with Pearses' Kerril Hardiman during Saturday evening's Senior A hurling championship clash at Duggan Park.
Turloughmore's Seán Loftus battling for possession with Pearses' Kerril Hardiman during Saturday evening's Senior A hurling championship clash at Duggan Park.

Turloughmore  0-16

 Padraig Pearses 0-13

TURLOUGHMORE overcame this tough hurdle last Saturday to take a top four spot in Group 2 of the senior A hurling championship after outscoring Padraig Pearses 0-9 to 0-1 in the final 25 minutes.

When Thomas Flannery put over his first free, Pearses were looking good for a first victory as they led 0-12 to 0-7. But despite nine poor second half wides, Turloughmore surged towards the finish line to ensure their third victory.

However, the drama may be just starting to unfold off-the-field as the lengthy appeals process into the eligibility of one of their players last June when they defeated Portumna means the two points secured in that 2-17 to 0-18 victory are vulnerable. Interestingly, it’s the former All-Ireland winners who have been provisionally squeezed out.

But Turloughmore could only focus on delivering in competitive action and were made work against a Padraig Pearses outfit that were equally unlucky in their campaign. Late goals denied them wins against Portumna and Gort and another late miss in this game saw them miss an equalising score.

The Gurteen/Ballymacward team started brightly, leading 0-3 to 0-0 as Lee Murphy and a Cyril Donnellan brace edged them ahead.  Donnellan started in midfield and put in a tour de force first half performance, registering five points. But a rib injury picked up before the break ended his afternoon and proved a major game changer.

Matthew Keating got Turloughmore’s first point on six minutes but Pearses maintained their supremacy. Donnellan picked out Gareth Lally for their fourth point  before splitting the posts to put four between them. And when he sent over another from the right on 11 minutes, Pearses were 0-6 to 0-2 clear.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.