Rampant Ogs show title intent
Tuesday, 27 August 2013
A RAMPANT, fluent, free-flowing and extremely sharp Ogs were very impressive as they pulverised a youthful and in transition Dromintee into a heavy defeat.
Ogs certainly laid down their senior title intentions with this performance and those intentions will now be tested to the full in a mouth-watering quarter final clash with reigning champions, Crossmaglen.
The quality of the Ogs first touch, kick passing, speed of thought, movement and support, their urge for a score and their score-taking, especially the long range scores from Conor Clarke (he hit four beauties in the game) were a joy to watch.
Dromintee really had no answer to the power play of Ogs, especially in the first half as Ogs on this performance have established themselves as real and strong contenders and perhaps favourites for the senior title, 2013.
I haven't seen an Ogs team as functionally effective and so mentally strong for a long time. They obviously were planning for a commanding lead to 'kill off' the game and in executing that plan, they totally dominated the first half.
Dromintee were reduced to taking just two scores as they chased a seemingly hopeless cause. Dromintee's first score was their first real attack and it was still a pointed free by Padraig Morgan on seven minutes.
On 24 minutes, young Cathal McKenna at full forward - who did cause the Ogs some bother - was foraging around the midfield area.
He picked up a loose ball and hoisted it forward high into the goal mouth. Ogs keeper Ciaran McKinney jumped high to collect but only succeeded in spilling the ball behind him into an empty net. It was Ogs only 'blot on the landscape' in a virtually perfect first half. The own and only goal of the first half was actually the first score of the game after 39 seconds. A brilliant, accurate cross field ball by Paul Duffy to Marc Cullen allowed the excellent corner forward to move inside and slip the ball confidently under the keeper to the net.
The rest of the half action was simply a litany of Ogs points at regular intervals - Marc Cullen (3-2 frees), Conor Clarke (4-3 'moster' long rangers), Sean Clarke (JJ) (2) and an excellent long range score from Paul Duffy. At the interval, Ogs were 1-10 to 1-1 ahead and coasting.
On the restart, with Shay Freeman, as all game, prominent in the approach work, Ogs hit three without reply in three minutes from Mark Cullen, Ross Clarke and Mark Trainor. These scores made the possibility of an Ogs victory firm and definite.
The experienced Kevin Fearon (a first half sub) was now having a telling influence in raising Dromintee's game and after Shane O'Neill traded points with Paul Duffy (45mf) and they had a brief spell of controlling play.
However, three points without reply from Aaron McKay, Conor Martin (free) and Kevin Dyas, were never going to change the result.
Sean Gribbin to Conor Clarke for a point and the status quo was restored. After that most resigned to the inevitable and as pace and intensity dropped, the game went through the motions in a series of exchanges.
Marc Cullen with Shane O'Neill; Mark Cullen's brace answered by Conor Martin and Kevin Fearon and finally Sť Harvey with Christopher Lynch to leave the full-time score emphatic in Ogs favour on a score line of 1-19 to 1-9.
In a sublime team display, Ogs were best served in reputation enhancing performances by Marc Cullen (my man of the match in all aspects of this game), Mark Trainor, so threatening up front, Conor Clarke, Shay Freeman, Darwell Parkinson, Paul Duffy (back to his brilliant best), Chris Rafferty and on ultra effective full back line of Sean Gribben, Gerard Barton and Lee McGinley.
Dromintee, to their credit, stayed competitive and raised their game steadily but their cause was always stillborn, given the quality of the Ogs. Kevin Dyas, Cathal McKenna, Shane O'Neill, Kevin Fearon and Aaron McKay posted impressive performances.
Pearse Og: C McKinney, S Gribben, G Barton, L McGinely, M McLaughlin, D Parkinson, S Freeman, C Rafferty, S Moore, R Clarke (0-1), C Clarke (0-5), P Duffy (0-2), M Cullen (1-6), S Clarke (0-3) and M Trainor (0-1). Subs: S Harney (0-1), C Kane, and J Barton.
Dromintee: P McEvoy, M McGahon, P O'Hare, P Campbell, M Doherty, J Molloy, B McArdle, S O'Neill (0-2), A McKay (0-1), K Dyas (0-1), N Quinn, C Martin (0-2), K McLellan, C McKenna (1-0) and P Morgan (0-1). Subs: K Fearon (0-1), C Lynch (0-1).
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