Monday 24 October 2011

South Leinster Junior C Hurling championship: Semi-final, Hollymount Monday, 24 October 2011

Wexford CBS......................2-4
Wicklow Schools................0-7

THIS GAME was a thriller. While the standard of hurling was curtailed by the dreadful weather conditions throughout, the outcome was in doubt right up until the final whistle and both sides deserve enormous credit for their endeavour and honesty.
However, semi-finals are for winning and it was Wexford CBS who booked their place in the South Leinster Junior Colleges ‘C’ hurling final following this three point victory over Wicklow Schools in Hollymount last Monday.
Scores were always going to be very hard to come by as the rain fell for the sixty minutes and it proved that CBS’s two goals were crucial to their progress. They led at half-time by 1-2 to 0-3 and importantly held on to that lead until the end.
Stephen Kearney and Joe Coleman flashed over the first half points for the Bokerboys and these scores sandwiched a fine poacher’s goal by John Forde who pounced on a loose ball in the goalmouth and flicked it to the net.
CBS could so easily have had another goal in that opening half when Joe Coleman neatly passed to Ian Moran and he raced through the Wicklow defence but his wicked shot to the corner was somehow saved by the goalkeeper.
Both sides got on top at various stages and it was the defences who ruled. Outstanding in the CBS defence were Sean Stafford, Nicky Lawlor and Ciaran Kirwan and they were helped out by a tenacious display by Jamie McDonnell and Gary Murphy in midfield.
The key score of the game arrived in the 42nd minute. CBS’s hardworking centre-forward Eoin Roche won possession in midfield and went on a strong run through the heart of the defence. Having caught the ball twice during the solo-run he gave the impression he was set to pass to a colleague but instead tossed the ball up and drove a stinging shot to the top right hand corner of the net.
It gave CBS a terrific boost but Wicklow Schools (all County Wicklow secondary school except Carnew VEC) stood up to the challenge and converted two frees to leave the score at 2-2 to 0-5 entering the final ten minutes.
However Jamie McDonnell cleverly nicked a point for the CBS but Wicklow responded at the other end (2-3 to 0-6) before the visitors cut the gap to two points to set up a nervous finish for the Wexford town school.
In the 56th minute John Forde was fouled and Joe Coleman showed composure to split the posts to restore the three point advantage. The defence continued to withstand Wicklow pressure and with Adam McDade eagle-eyed in goal combined with the efforts of the outfield players, they just about held out for victory after an epic struggle.
Wexford CBS:
Adam McDade (Faythe Harriers); Liam Barry (Faythe Harriers), Ciaran Kirwan (Faythe Harriers), James Somers (Faythe Harriers); Nicky Lawlor (Faythe Harriers), Sean Stafford (St. Martin’s, Capt.), Luke Byrne (Faythe Harriers); Jamie McDonnell (Faythe Harriers, 0-1), Gary Murphy (Faythe Harriers); Stephen Kearney (Faythe Harriers, 0-1), Eoin Roche (Faythe Harriers, 1-0), Joseph McBride (St. John’s); Ian Moran (Glynn-Barntown), Joe Coleman (St. Martin’s 0-2, 1 free), John Forde (Shelmaliers, 1-0).
Subs: Mark Chapman (Faythe Harriers) for McBride, Dylan Hynes (Clonard) for Chapman, David Tormey (Clonard) for Moran.
Ref: James Flood (St. Mary’s Maudlintown)

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