The game at Jordanstown was delayed for over an hour after the Sat Nav on the Maynooth team bus took the team to UU’s Coleraine campus instead of Jordanstown.
After changing on the bus and running straight onto the pitch, they faced into a galeforce wind and still managed to lead 2-10 to 1-7 at half time. The home side failed to score against the wind in the second half as Maynooth’s class told, Kilkenny star Padraig Walsh pulling the strings with 0-5 from play.
Galway’s Brian Molloy was scorer-in-chief with 1-13, and Maynooth now need to beat UCC at home next week to advance.
“They have 15 inter-county hurlers whereas we have Padraig from the Kilkenny team,” said Maynooth boss, Offaly’s Liam Hogan.
“Brian Molloy (Galway) and Brian Hogan (Tipperary) are on their county panels as well, but we will be up against it. We were a bit rusty today and slow to get going.
The journey didn’t help. For some reason there was a breakdown in communication but we got here in the end!
“Our physio was using the back seat of the bus to give the boys treatment on the way up, but I am happy enough with the effort. It was a good team performance.”
The hosts nailed an early penalty through Nicky McKeague and tried to take control with the wind advantage.
They led early on but Maynooth hit them against the run of play with goals from Darregh Egerton and the prolific Molloy.
With such a strong breeze at their backs for the second half, Maynooth really opened up and rained points down on top of Jordanstown from huge distances. Second-half goals were bundled in from Niall Kenny and Eoin Kenny, on both occasions after UUJ failed to clear their lines after long pucks into the square, in an utterly one-sided contest.
N McKeague 1-2 (pen), D Nugent 0-2 (1f), K Rice, M Dudley, J Connolly 0-1 each.
B Molloy 1-13 (7f, 1 ‘65’), P Walsh 0-5, D Egerton, N Kenny, E Kenny 1-0 each, D Burke, MJ Lalor 0-2 each, S O’Brien 0-1
S Doherty (Armagh); A Orchin (Antrim), G Walsh (Antrim), T O Ciaran (Antrim); T Burns (Antrim), C Johnson (Antrim), R Brannigan (Down); M Dudley (Antrim), J McGreevy (Antrim); K Rice (Antrim), D McKernan (Antrim), J Connolly (Antrim); N McKeague (Antrim), D Nugent (Antrim), A Dooey (Antrim).
J O’Connell (Antrim) for Burns (20), L Dunphy (Antrim) for K Rice (42), R Gillen (Antrim) for N McKeague (42)
B Hogan (Tipperary); E Moloney (Tipperary), P Smith (Dublin), M Campion (Dublin); K Sheridan (Wexford), P Deegan (Kilkenny), R Donohue (Wexford); C Breen (Kilkenny), D Burke (Kilkenny); D Egerton (Westmeath), P Walsh (Kilkenny), N Kenny (Tipperary); B Molloy (Galway), MJ Lalor (Laois), E Kenny (Kilkenny).
R Smith (Dublin) for Breen (49), S O’Brien (Kilkenny) for E Kenny (49), G Egan (Roscommon) for Maloney (53), F Bass (Kildare) for M Lalor (55)
Kevin Brady (Louth)