DLS salvage late draw

REIGNING Waterford SHC champions De La Salle needed an injury-time point to salvage a draw, 1-13 apiece, against Foumilewater in a thrilling group championship game at Dungarvan yesterday.

Teenager Jamie Barron’s early goal gave Fourmile a flying start and though De La Salle’s Eoin Madigan goaled on the quarter hour to edge them into the lead the challengers were more than good value for their 1-8 to 1-5 half-time lead.

With Barron and county star Shane Walsh providing major threats they matched De La Salle in a nail-biting second half. Still two points to the good in the closing minutes a major upset was on the cards, until the champions salvaged a priceless draw with a brace of late Brian Phelan pointed frees.

In the opening game Ballyduff Upper, inspired by the brilliance of county team captain Stephen Molumphy, got the better of Stradbally 1-18 to 0-11.

The sides ended the first half level on 0-8 each, but this tie was settled early when Shane Kearney scored a fine individual goal and Molumphy, Brian Kearney and Brendan Hannon all rifled over points to leave Michael ‘Brick’ Walsh’s with only a relegation battle to look forward to.

Last year’s IHC champions Roanmore registered their first win, edging out Passage East by the minimum margin, 1-12 to 1-11.

Minor star Gavin O’Brien was his side’s hero, scoring the crucial match-winning point, his fifth of the game, at the death to seal a victory that could keep them in the top flight.

Laurence O’Neill for Roanmore and Liam Flynn traded first-half goals as Passage led by 1-6 to 1-4 at the break. However with O’Brien leading by example Roanmore rifled over six unanswered points to hit the front. Though Passage, for whom Eoin Kelly was their chief marksman equalised O’Brien had the final say.

The real excitement however came in the second game with t Mount Sion happy to settle for a draw, 1-14 to 2-11, against Dungarvan.

Colm Curran’s sixth minute goal strike wiped out Sion’s early lead, but a goal by Ken McGrath in the 16th minute enabled them to lead by 1-9 to 2-4 at the interval. It set the scene for the thrilling fare that followed on the turnover.

Dungarvan, brilliantly led by Jamie Nagle, Colm Curran and Gavin Crotty firmly threw down the gauntlet to Sion, and with the sides deadlocked on the scoreboard each in turn squandered chances of a late winner.

Last evening’s game at Fraher Field resulted in a convincing ten-point victory for Lismore, 5-14 to 2-13, against Abbeyside to copper fasten their place in the quarter-finals.

Abbeyside enjoyed a sensational start and goals by Mark Ferncombe and Mark Gorman supplemented by a brace of points had them 2-2 in front inside three minutes. However with county star Maurice Shanahan showing the way, he ended with a personal tally of 2-5, Lismore courageously fought back and were just a goal adrift, 2-10 to 2-7, at the interval.

Lismore wasted no time upping the pressure on the restart and when John Prendergast’s goal put them in front there was only going to be one result.

Former county star Dave Bennett made an instant impact with a magnificent point and goals by John Heneghan and Bennett closed out the game in emphatic fashion.

The first of the six-game weekend programme at Fraher Field on Saturday evening provided a rampant Ballygunner with yet another effortless victory as they crushed Tallow on a 2-17 to 0-6.

Nine points in front inside the opening ten minutes thanks in the main to goals from Brian O’Sullivan and Harley Barnes, the Gunners weren’t flattered by their commanding 2-8 to 0-4 interval lead. There was nothing by way of response from Tallow on the restart, as the winners eased to their 17-point victory.

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