Dempsey double swings it for Árdscoil

Árdscoil Rís 2-15 St Colman’s 2-12
A superb contest in this Harty Cup round robin game in Cahir yesterday, two fine hurling sides making light of heavy underfoot conditions to serve up a quality game, with Árdscoil’s David Dempsey’s two-goal blast proving the ultimate difference.

It wasn’t by any means a virtuoso scoring display, however. On a talented and skilful Árdscoil side Dempsey was well supported in the full-forward line by Micheál O’Loughlin and Ian Galvin, both of whom had three points from play. Free-taker Cian O’Brien showed great accuracy in difficult conditions while playmaker supreme Cian Lynch covered every blade of grass in a man of the match performance, scoring three points and setting up a host of other scores.

St Colman’s too had their shooting stars, full-forward Anthony Spillane the pick of them, but, again, ably supported by Ronan O’Regan, Ronan Bransfield, free-taker Alan Fenton and hard-working centre-forward Shane Moroney, who enjoyed a great battle with the precocious Ronan Lynch (still U16 but already a Limerick minor).

The Limerick college set the early pace, four points on the board (Lynch with two, Galvin and O’Loughlin one each) before Colman’s got off the mark with a Fenton pointed free. Even on 17 minutes it was still looking bleak for the Cork youngsters, trailing 0-8 to 0-2, before they finally got going.

When they did, they had midfielder Kevin O’Neill to thank. From the beginning the talented Watergrasshill youngster impressed and his high centre set up Colman’s first goal, Spillane making the catch and using his strength to hold off full-back Mark Clohessy before booting to the net.

That was exactly the lift St Colman’s needed and by half-time they had reduced the deficit to just four points, 1-9 to 1-5.

On the resumption, the wind now in their sails and in their favour, it was Colman’s maintaining that momentum, three unanswered points (Fenton two frees, the lively O’Regan with another) bringing them within two. At 1-10 to 1-8, it was game very much on.

O’Loughlin was the man to stem the bleeding for Árdscoil, alert to the breaking ball from an under-hit O’Brien free to point for Árdscoil Rís. But again St Colman’s came back, centre-back Tom Carroll outstanding, and as the game entered the final five minutes there was just a single point in it, 1-12 to 1-11.

Just as a little panic was beginning to enter the equation for Árdscoil, however, in stepped the cool Cian Lynch to set up the second Dempsey goal, which was followed by a point each for O’Brien and Dempsey.

Burly sub Mike Waites showed some sublime control to goal for Colman’s at the death, but that’s what it was for the Cork side, unfortunately, another loss and the end of the road.

Scorers for Árdscoil Rís: D Dempsey 2-1, C O’Brien 0-5fs, M O’Loughlin, I Galvin, C Lynch 0-3 each.

Scorers for St Colman’s: A Fenton 0-6fs, A Spillane 1-2, M Waites 1-0, R O’Regan, R Bransfield 0-2 each.

ÁRDSCOIL RÍS: C Houlihan; B Fitzpatrick, M Clohessy, G Brown; M Casey, R Lynch, K McGlennon; W O’Donoghue, M Foley; C O’Brien, E Keogh, C Lynch; M O’Loughlin, D Dempsey, I Galvin.

Subs: J O’Halloran (Brown 43), C Crehan (Keogh 46), C McCarthy (Foley 58).

ST COLMAN’S: D O’Callaghan; S Linehan, B Fenton, S O’Riordan; P Murphy, T Carroll, J Neville; J McCarthy, K O’Neill; R Bransfield, S Moroney, A Fenton; R O’Regan, A Spillane, S Walsh.

Subs: C O’Connor for McCarthy (29), M Waites for Neville (55).

Referee: N Cosgrove (Marlfield, Tipperary).

© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved

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