Trailing by only two points at half time, Kinsale manager Paul McCarthy was happy with the scoreline, but not so happy with the performance. Alas their level of performance failed to improve, unlike Carrigaline, who, back to full-strength after a summer of disarray, looked closer to the side that reached last year’s semi-finals as they won the second-half, 2-11 to 0-2.
Niall Coakley hammered the final nail into Kinsale’s coffin with a goal 47 minutes in.
“There was a lot of pressure on us to win today, especially as we’re in another relegation final in the hurling. So when the goal went in, it was just pure relief because that gave us a cushion.”
For Coakley, with four points to his name all year, his tally of 2-5 was a personal vindication on top of the team’s survival.
“The scores were hard to come by for myself all this year and usually I pride myself on my scoring, so it was a huge relief to get the scores for the team. Personally, I’m delighted, and for the team, I’m delighted.”
Coakley gave Carrigaline the impetus inside three minutes of the first whistle by winning and converting a penalty. It was a lead Kinsale could never whittle down in spite of the best efforts of Gearóid Finn to drag his side to safety. Shane Griffin was called ashore 17 minutes in such was Finn’s dominance as a playmaker, but the switch of McIntyre from attack to man-mark Finn proved inspired. Having had eight scoring attempts with Finn in full-flow, Kinsale could only match that number in the 43 minutes after McIntyre’s switch.
Cian Barry and McIntyre even advanced upfield to combine for a score to ensure Carrigaline’s half-time lead of two, in spite of 10 missed chances.
Ultimately Carrigaline had too much weaponry for Kinsale to resist in the second-half. They were relentless in defence, Nicolas Murphy controlled the middle and Coakley and Simon O’Brien were equally powerful presences, winning and carrying ball down the flanks.
Carrigaline racked up 1-7 without reply until Finn got Kinsale’s first score of the half, four minutes from time. But Carrigaline weren’t done yet and Joe Moran scored a brace of points and assisted a last-minute Wesley O’Brien goal, to compound the embarrassment for their Carrigdhoun rivals.
Scorers for Carrigaline: N Coakley (2-5, 1-0 pen, 3fs), W O’Brien (1-0), D Drake (0-3, 1f, 1 45), J Moran (0-2), P Murphy, C McIntyre, B Coakley, B O’Keeffe, S O’Brien (0-1 each).
Scorers for Kinsale: G Finn (0-4, 1f, 1 45), L Kiely, C O’Brien, A Gould (0-1 each).
CARRIGALINE: J O’Reilly; O O’Connor, G Harrington, C Forbes; K Kavanagh, C Barry, S Griffin; N Murphy, O Kavanagh; N Coakley, B O’Keeffe, S O’Brien; C McIntyre, P Murphy, D Drake.
Subs: B Coakley for Griffin (17), C MacSweeney for Barry (34), W O’Brien for O’Keeffe (56), J Moran for P Murphy (57), D Twomey for B Coakley (58).
KINSALE: G O’Callaghan; M Coughlan, J Keohane, C McCarthy; N McCarthy, R O’Sullivan, D Ward; M Cronin, D Coughlan; G Finn, A Gould, D Murphy; C O’Brien, L Kiely, M Eaton.
Subs: B Grey for Kiely (30-30+1 blood), N Stanley for Murphy (48), B Grey for O’Brien (53).
Referee: K Murphy (Nemo Rangers).