St. Francis College, Rochestown 1-10 St. Brendan’s College, Killarney 1-9
By Edward Newman, Mallow
St. Francis College, Rochestown remain on course for an unprecedented ‘Quadruple’ following an exciting one point victory over favourites, St. Brendan’s, Killarney in this Corn Uí Mhuirí (Munster Colleges Senior ‘A’ football) semi-final at Mallow today.
Cork minor football captain, Seán Powter, proved the hero of the hour as his coolly-converted injury time point proved decisive, the score the winning act in powerful second half performance from the Cork school.
Already crowned Simcox Cup (Cork Colleges Senior football) and O’Callaghan Cup (Cork Colleges Senior hurling) champions, ‘Roco’ are now on course to make it a clean sweep of titles and complete a Munster ‘Double’ having already qualified for this year’s Harty Cup decider.
There were joyous scenes at the final whistle for the Rochestown players, their teachers, supporters and parents as a season to remember now sees the Cork school go forward to play Corn Uí Mhuirí and Hogan Cup holders, Pobalscoil Chorca Dhuibhne, in what will surely be billed as a mouth-watering Cork-Kerry Munster decider.
What is even more remarkable is the fact that 12 of this Rochestown group are also on the Harty Cup hurling team, but their supreme fitness levels, will to win and positive attitude were three of the major factors in this surprise victory.
Trailing by five points after 33 minutes, Rochestown dug deep in a masterful second half performance where Powter, Niall Quirke, Shane Kingston, Evan Ryle, and Daniel Meaney played starring roles as they also go in search of their first Corn Uí Mhuirí title since 1950.
St. Brendan’s, to their credit, contributed to a splendid game of football and, in Shane Courtney, Dan O’Brien, Matt Rennie, Evan Cronin, Ronan Buckley and Michael Burns, provided many of the game’s best performers.
However, the Killarney football nursery will rue many missed opportunities – they kicked 14 wides over the hour - a staggering statistic and proof that they enjoyed the lion’s share of possession, but profligacy rather than their impressive footballing nous, let them down.
The ‘Sem’ led 1-5 to 0-5 at the break, their goal before half-time finished by Listry’s Ronan Buckley after some brilliant build-up play from Rennie, Gavin Whyte and Cronin.
And having kicked the first two points of the second half, it looked like St. Brendan’s would be heading to yet another Corn Uí Mhuirí final. However, Rochestown had other ideas, scoring 1-4 without reply, the goal coming from Daniel Meaney in the 53rd minute.
A frantic finish saw the sides level two minutes into injury when Dara Moynihan pointed, but Seán Powter had other ideas landing the all-important point.
Scorers for St. Francis: D Meaney 1-0; S Kingston (free) 0-3 (0-2frees); S Powter 0-2; C Cormack, M McAuliffe, B McAuliffe, E Ryle and L O’Sullivan 0-1 each.
Scorers for St. Brendan’s: R Buckley 1-2; M Burns (free) and E Cronin 0-2 each; D Clifford (free), D Moynihan and Matt Rennie 0-1 each.
ROCHESTOWN: P. Lynch (St. Michael’s);D Murphy (Douglas), N Quirke (Carrigaline), N Walsh (Douglas);D Kelleher (Cobh),S Powter (Douglas), D Griffin (Carrigaline); E O’Brien (Douglas), L Dineen (Douglas); D Meaney (St. Michael’s), E Ryle (Carrigaline), M McAuliffe (Douglas), S Kingston (capt) (Douglas), C Cormack (St. Michael’s), L. O’Sullivan (St. Michael’s). Subs: B McAuliffe for Dineen (ht); K O’Donovan (NEmo Rangers) for M McAuliffe (53); D Stack (Carrigaline) for Kelleher (58).
ST. BRENDAN’S: D Carroll (Spa); D Naughton (Dr. Crokes), S Courtney (Glenflesk), J Flynn (Firies); G Whyte (Dr. Crokes), D O’Brien (GLenflesk), M McCarthy (Spa); R Buckley (Listry), M Rennie (Fossa); E Cronin (Spa), M Burns (Dr. Crokes), D Moynihan (Spa); D Clifford (Fossa), M Foley (Spa), L O’Donoghue (Glenflesk). Subs: B Courtney (Dr. Crokes) for Rennie (inj. 45); L Kearney (Spa) (capt) for Clifford (48); W Courtney (Firies) for O’Donoghue (51); C Spillane (Spa) for Buckley (55). D Doherty (Legion) for Flynn (59)
Referee – K. Walsh (Clare)