A three goal salvo in the opening ten minutes by St Flannan’s College Ennis proved decisive as they had to withstand a tremendous second half comeback from Mercy Mounthawk Tralee, to just hang on for a three point win, in this gripping Corn Ui Mhuiri quarter-final played at Rathkeale.
St Flannan’s just walked through a static Mounthawk defence to score goals in the seventh, ninth and tenth minutes from Gearoid Cahill, Sean Kennedy and Eoghan Thynne as they raced 3-3 to 0-3 in front.
To their credit, Mounthawk hit back with 1-2 without reply with Bobby Regan getting the goal. Then another soft goal was conceded by the Tralee side when they allowed Gearoid Cahill to run straight through the middle and St Flannan’s looked home and hosed at half-time leading 4-7 to 1-8.
However Mounthawk resumed a transformed side and showing tremendous battling qualities they penned St Flannan’s back in their own half and some excellent free taking by Dara Devine and a goal from a penalty by Bobby Regan saw Mounthawk close the gap to just two points with as many minutes left.
Crucially they missed two kickable frees and Darragh Duggan got St Flannan’s second of two second half scores to close out the game but how Mercy Mounthawk will rue their sluggish start.
G Cahill ( 2-1), D Duggan ( 0-6, 5 frees), E Thynne ( 1-1), S Kennedy ( 1-0), G Cooney ( 0-1)
B Regan ( 2-3, 1-0 pen, 2 frees), D Devine (0-6 frees), R O’Connor ( 0-2), E McElligott ( 0-1)
T O’Brien; M Collins, P Casey, D O’Shea; I Ugwueru, R Hayes, T Hannan; C Donnelly, C Mc Neilis; S Kennedy, G Cahill, E Thynne; G Cooney, D Duggan, C Brannock.
Subs: D Mescall for M Collins ( 20), I Molloy for S Kennedy ( h/t), P Talty for C Brannock ( 40)
B O’Regan; P O’Mahoney, S Walsh, D McMahon; F Barry, S Collins, C Carmody; C O’Reilly, M Linnane; R O’Connor, B O’Regan, S Griffin; M Walsh, D Devine, E McElligott.
Subs: R Murphy for S Griffin ( 47), M O’Gara for E McElligott ( 47), F Ennis for M Walsh ( 55)
Referee: R Moloney (Limerick)