Dublin 3-18 Derry 2-11
Dublin qualified for their first All-Ireland Under-21 hurling final since 1972 with a convincing 3-18 to 2-11 win over Derry in Newry this evening.
The Leinster champions were well on top in the early stages at Pairc Esler, leading by 3-12 to 1-8 at half-time, with Declan O'Dwyer (2) and Peadar Carton sharing out their goals.
Sean Leo McGoldrick and Sam Dodds netted for Derry in either half, but the Dubs, whose midfielders Johnny McCaffrey and Alan McCrabbe contributed 0-10, eased through to a September 9 decider against either Cork or Galway.
Spectacular team-work by Sean Lane's Dublin side saw them succeed tonight and they certainly signalled their intent early on with both midfielders and all six of their starting forwards getting in on the scoring act during the opening half.
This semi-final began in blistering fashion and after just eight minutes the sides had produced a combined tally of 1-9.
Dublin held a 1-4 to 0-5 lead at this juncture with Declan O'Dwyer scoring their opening goal in the fifth-minute, after the unmarked full-forward received a pass from Peadar Carton before rifling the ball past Derry goalkeeper Daryl McDermott.
However Derry were to notch a goal of their own from corner forward Sean Leo McGoldrick six minutes later, after a set-up from Sam Dodds, to level the contest for the second time.
However Dublin were once again to find their groove, and in an impressive five-minute spell they bounded into a 3-9 to 1-5 lead with Carton and O'Dwyer both finding the net in quick succession.
Carton's strike came exactly midway through the opening half and was the result of some excellent support play from Eoin Moran.
The sides once again began to trade points before the interval with Gareth O'Kane and Oisin McCloskey on target for Derry, while Diamuid Connolly, the senior football panellist and team captain McCaffrey took impressive scores for Dublin.
Indeed, this was a half which saw tremendous accuracy in front of the posts from both sides and neither team had shot wide of the target until Oisin McCloskey was wide of the target for Derry in the 21st-minute.
Dublin held a 3-12 to 1-8 interval advantage but it was Derry who had the best chance in the initial stages of the second half, when after a minute's play McGoldrick was unlucky to see his goal shot ricochet off the stick of Paddy Curtin and go out for a '65'.
Paddy Henry did manage to take his fourth point of the hour from the resulting placed ball, but Dublin were to open up a double scores gap at 3-15 to 1-9 with points from midfielders McCaffrey (2) and McCrabbe.
A Sam Dodds goal in the 42nd-minute did give Derry some hope and although the Oak Leafers continued to tag on points, Dublin matched them score for score.
An injury to defender Cormac McKenna late on compounded Derry's woes as an impressive Dublin side advanced to next month's Croke Park final.
DUBLIN: P Curtin; R Drumgoole, P O'Callaghan, D Webster; K Dunne, T Brady, M McGarry; J McCaffrey (0-5), Alan McCrabbe (0-5); E Moran (0-1), D Connolly (0-1), J Boland (0-1); P Carton (1-1), D O'Dwyer (2-2), R O'Carroll (0-2).
Subs used: G Kelly for McGarry (38 mins), I Fleming for Connolly (40), C Lane for Moran (50), S Ennis for O'Carroll (59), J Gilligan for Dunne (61).
DERRY: D McDermott; S Henry, R McCloskey, S McNicholl; C McKenna, M Craig, C McKenna; B Dodds, N Holley; G O'Kane (0-1), O McCloskey (0-3); P Henry (0-5), S Dodds (1-0), K O'Neill, SL McGoldrick (1-2).
Subs used: C McQuillan for O'Neill (50 mins), C Mulholland for McKenna (58).
Referee: Anthony Stapleton (Laois)