Limerick Colleges turn tables on Sceilge

Limerick Colleges 2-9 Coláiste na Sceilge 1-9

A fair result it was too because Limerick, even before their numerical advantage following a second yellow card offence by Sceilge's Liam Sheehan in the 44th minute, were the better side.

Playing into a difficult wind in the opening half, the Limerick combination played more like a club side than one drawn from six different schools (though Ard Scoil Rís had seven starters). Their defence was especially impressive - anchored by Pat Guinnane at full-back and centre-back Jamsie Carroll - working superbly as a unit to hold the Kerry college scoreless for the first quarter and conceding just four points before the break.

Two of those Sceilge points came from the powerful David King, shifted from centre to full-forward, with Kevin O'Shea and Liam O'Sullivan adding the others.

At the other end, the Limerick forwards were working just as hard as their backs, in attack and defence.

Every ball was fiercely contested, but with discipline. Meanwhile, against a Kerry defence as resolute as their own, they managed to notch 1-4, giving them a one-goal half-time advantage. All the first-half Limerick scoring was done by the two Ard Scoil Rís colleagues in the inside line, full-forward David Dalton with 1-1, Tony Barry with the three points, target man Neil Mulvihill in the other corner supplying much of the ammunition.

The second-half was even tighter. Playing into the wind, down a man midway through the half, Coláiste na Sceilge fought Limerick score for score to the final whistle. Despite the strong play of both Phillip Corrigan and Barry O'Doherty, the Sceilge combination of Gary O'Driscoll and DJ Moran dominated midfield for long periods and the Kerry pair both got on the score-sheet, with King adding another.

Liam O'Sullivan converted two frees and the Kerry side were within a point of Limerick (1-7 to 0-9) with six minutes to go.

The Limerick response was decisive. Mulvihill pointed, after working exceptionally hard, and centre-forward Jason Murphy found the back of the net after a superb build-up involving at least four players. Those scores put Limerick back in the driving seat and though Sceilge responded again, their goal by Kevin O'Shea came two minutes into injury-time.

There was scarcely a weak link evident in a cohesive Limerick effort, tight defence, solid midfield, dangerous attack, especially inside; Coláiste na Sceilge are not the force they were during their three-year reign, but there is still a lot of talent around, full-back Killian Young was as good as anyone on the park yesterday.

Early days yet, but welcome signs for Limerick football.

Scorers: Limerick Colleges: T. Barry 0-7 (0-4 frees); D. Dalton 1-1; J. Murphy 1-0; N. Mulvihill 0-1. Coláiste na Sceilge: K. O'Shea 1-1; D. King 0-3; L. O'Sullivan 0-3 (0-2 frees); G. O'Driscoll, DJ Moran, 0-1 each.

LIMERICK COLLEGES: S. Lyons (St Enda's); P. O'Brien (St Enda's), P. Guinnane (St Nessan's), K. Nolan (Ard Scoil Rís); P. Mullins (Limerick CBS), J. Carroll (Ard Scoil Rís), M. Cahill (St Clement's); P. Corrigan (Ard Scoil Rís), B. O'Doherty (St Clement's); E. Hogan (Ard Scoil Rís), J. Murphy (St Clement's), S. Mullally (Ard Scoil Rís); N. Mulvihill (Crescent Comprehensive), D. Dalton (Ard Scoil Rís), T. Barry (Ard Scoil Rís). Sub: J. Shine (St Nessan's).

COLÁISTE NA SCEILGE: C. Dennehy; M. O'Connell, K. Young, S. O'Sullivan; A. O'Sullivan, E. O'Neill, R. O'Sullivan; G. O'Driscoll, DJ Moran; J. Brennan, D. King, K. O'Shea; L. O'Sullivan, L. Sheehan, D. Donnelly. Subs: A. Curran (O'Connell 24); C. O'Sullivan (Brennan 45).

Referee: D. Farrell (Mitchelstown).

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