Cork Premier IHC: Carrigaline 2-21 Aghada 2-15
Carrigaline made it two wins from two in Group A of the Cork Premier IHC as they came from behind to defeat Aghada in Cobh on Saturday evening.
Despite playing with a man disadvantage for the majority of the game, Carrigaline produced a stunning second-half performance - they trailed by five points with 20 minutes to go - to claim a remarkable triumph by six points.
Both sides emerged with wins in their first games back after the enforced break with Aghada defeating Youghal, while Carrigaline beat Courcey Rovers.
In the searing heat of the harbour town, Aghada made a scorching start as they raced into a three-point lead by the third minute.
William Leahy, who claimed 12 points in his side’s aforementioned win last week, continued his fine run of form as he fired over twice before midfielder Mark McCarthy did likewise.
The two teams soon swapped a treble of points apiece with corner-forward Brian Kelleher keeping Carrigaline in the hunt with two well-taken frees, 0-6 to 0-3.
Leahy again split the uprights moments later but their opponents would rally and level the scores by the 15th minute.
Full-forward Rob O’Shea raced clear on goal and his powerful drive just about squirmed past goalkeeper Ciaran O’Shea before creeping across his line.
Simon O’Brien grabbed the equaliser with an excellent point to make it 1-4 to 0-7 but the game again quickly turned just before the first water break.
Half-back Chris Vaughan was sent off for a second yellow card offence and shortly after the game resumed, their rivals grabbed their first goal of the match with an incredible strike from Cian Fleming. The pacy attacker collected the sliotar, charged towards the target, and from long range, he drilled it into the top right corner of the net.
Pearse O’Neill and John Looney added a couple of points for the men from East Cork before the half time interval but four scores for Carrigaline - the pick of the bunch being a superb sideline cut by David Drake - kept Carrig in contention, 1-10 to 1-8.
They continued with that momentum at the start of the second half-hour as they raised three white flags. But it seemed like their efforts would be in vain as two Leahy frees and a penalty which he bobbled into the bottom right corner kept the green and whites in control, 2-13 to 1-11 with 20 minutes remaining.
But Carrigaline showed incredible heart and spirit. Led by the clinical Brian Kelleher, they would get 11 of the next 13 scores in the match, including a goal from Denis McBarron after a mistake from the goalkeeper.
Aghada’s misery was compounded in injury time when Jake O’Donoghue was sent off and it was Carrigaline that claimed the six-point win to go top of the group.
B Kelleher 0-9 (8 frees), R O’Shea 1-2, D McBarron 1-0, S O’Brien and D Drake 0-3 each, E Desmond 0-2, K Kavanagh and D Griffin 0-1 each.
W Leahy 1-8 (1-0 pen, 0-5 frees), C Fleming 1-0, J Looney 0-3, P O’Neill 0-2, M McCarthy and A Stafford 0-1 each.
R Foster; S Williamson, P Ronayne, D Stack; C Vaughan, C Barry, D Griffin; W O’Brien, E Desmond; S O’Brien, D McBarron, D Drake; B Kelleher, R O’Shea, R Kelleher.
K Kavanagh for R Kelleher (19), K McIntyre for S O’Brien (51), C McSweeney for C Barry (53), S O’Brien for D McBarron (61), R Kelleher for D Drake (64).
C O’Shea; D Rice, J O’Donoghue, E Leahy; T Hartnett, M Russell, A Stafford; A Berry, M McCarthy; J Looney, W Leahy, C Fleming; C Terry, P O’Neill, D Creedon.
J O’Hanlon for M McCarthy (40), K O’Hanlon for D Creedon (56).
Pat Lyons (Bishopstown).