Roco, who already suffered disappointing defeats in the Corn Uí Mhuirí and Harty Cup deciders, left it late having to come from four points down in the closing minutes. This was hard graft for both sides. Led by Ian O’Callaghan at midfield and wing-back Chidozie Ogbene, Coláiste Chríost Rí made the early running and raced 0-6 to 0-1 clear. Finding space, the aforementioned O’Callaghan was on target and three pointed efforts from Mark Cronin ensured they held control.
A point from Flahive and a Shane Kingston free reduced the deficit to five points at the break, 0-8 to 0-3. Kingston registered a much-needed free soon after the restart and it served to re-ignite the Rochestown challenge. Despite the wides mounting, Liam Dineen added another score before Críost Rí had full-forward Olan Murphy black carded eight minutes after the resumption.
Amazingly, the Capwell side got their first, and only, flag of the second 30 minutes in the 49th minute from a brilliantly struck O’Callaghan free, leaving the score 0-9 to 0-5. Roco had much of the possession but almost kicked this one away. However, they made it count when it mattered. Kingston scored twice from play and another from a free to narrow the gap to one point. And there was still time for Griffin, set up by sub David Stack, to fire the equaliser
Scorers for St Francis College: S Kingston (0-6, three frees), B Flahive, D Griffin and L Dineen (0-1 each).
Scorers for Críost Rí: I O’Callaghan (0-4, one free, one 45m), M Cronin (0-3, two frees), O Murphy and C Buckley (0-1 each).
ST FRANCIS COLLEGE: P Lynch (St Michael’s); A Geaney (Douglas), N Quirke (Carrigaline), N Walsh (Douglas); S Powter (Douglas), D Griffin (Carrigaline), K O’Donovan (Nemo Rangers); E O’Brien (Douglas), D Meaney (St Michael’s); E Ryle (Capt, Carrigaline), S Kingston (Douglas), L Dineen (St Michael’s); B McAuliffe (Douglas), C Cormack (St Michael’s), L O’Sullivan (St Michael’s).
Subs: B Flahive (Douglas) for D Meaney (3 inj), D Murphy (Douglas) for A Geaney (40 inj), J Holland (Douglas) for B McAuliffe (51), D Stack (Carrigaline) for B Flahive (53).
CRÍOST RÍ: J O’Regan (Sliabh Rua); C Scully (St Finbarr’s), C Dennehy (St Finbarr’s), D Byrne (St Finbarr’s); C Ogbene (Nemo Rangers), J Good (Tracton), A O’Callaghan (Capt, St Michael’s); P Geary (Sliabh Rua), I O’Callaghan (St Finbarr’s); S McCarthy (St Finbarr’s), C Buckley (St Finbarr’s), M Cronin (Nemo Rangers); S Hannigan (St Finbarr’s), O Murphy (St Finbarr’s), S Dennehy (St Finbarr’s).
Subs: M Brosnan (Carrigaline) for O Murphy (bc 38), J Ryan (Sliabh Rua) for S McCarthy (42).
Referee: C Egan (St Nick’s).