By Andrew Horgan
Dripsey are through to the next round of the Cork Intermediate Hurling Championship as they deservedly defeated Na Piarsaigh 1-15 to 1-11 in Ballincollig last night.
Na Piarsaigh started brightly as Cormac Murphy split the uprights after three minutes. But Dripsey soon settled and levelled the scores through Michael O’Riordan.
They were in front by the midway point in the first period as Eoghan Maher grabbed the game’s first goal. After Killian Kelleher’s initial shot was well saved by keeper Sean Fitzgerald, Maher was alert to the rebound and drilled it into the net from a difficult angle.
Piarsaigh responded to that setback and shortly after they tallied a brace of unanswered overs before scoring a goal of their own in the 21st minute. Dripsey goalkeeper Diarmuid O’Riordan stopped Gordan Joyce’s long-range shot from dropping over his crossbar but the sliotar fell for Kieran Waters to hammer home.
Dripsey, led by Maher, scored six points on the bounce to lead 1-10 to 1-4 at the beginning of the second half.
Their rivals from Fairhill closed the gap by scoring six of the next seven points to make it 1-11 to 1-10 heading into the final 10 minutes.
An off the ball incident saw Conor Bowen and Stephen Murray sent off for either team. And late Dripsey scores from James Cotter, Eoghan Maher and Michael O’Riordan (2) proved to be the difference.
Scorers for Dripsey: E Maher 1-5, M O’Riordan 0-8 (3f, 1 65), J Carey (1f) and J Cotter 0-1.
Scorers for Na Piarsaigh: K Moynihan 0-5 (3f), K Waters 1-0, E Dorgan, C Murphy, A Dennehy, G Joyce, E Hanifin and P Murphy 0-1 each.
D O’Riordan; B Kelleher, S O’Riordan, D Buckley; S Murray, J O’Riordan, J Carey; A Murray, D O’Sullivan; M O’Connell, M O’Riordan, J Cotter; E Maher, M O’Sullivan, K Kelleher
Subs: D O’Sullivan for B Kelleher (6), E O’Connell for K Kelleher (24), J Buckley for A Murray (32).
S Fitzgerald; L Murphy, E Sheehan, D Bowen; A Bell, G Healy, C Flynn; E Hanifin, G Joyce; E Galvin, A Dennehy, C Murphy; K Moynihan, K Waters, E Dorgan.
Subs: P Murphy for C Murphy (38), C Bowen for E Galvin (46).
Referee: Michael O’Mahony (Kilbrittain).