A first TUS Dr Harty Cup (U19 A H) final awaits St Joseph’s Secondary School, Tulla as this amazing journey continues for the Clare side.
Having been beaten by DLS College in the first round by two points, St Joseph’s reversed that result in admirable fashion in Mallow on Saturday afternoon.
But not before Terence Fahy's team had to withstand a ferocious challenge from DLS, having to come from behind 0-13 to 1-12 at the second water break. They went on to outscore their Waterford opponents seven points to one thereafter.
Notable, this was another strong finish from the Clare school.
Sean Withycombe again starred, scoring 15 points, while Adam Hogan was given the job of marking DLS danger man Paddy Fitzgerald - even if Fitzgerald finished with 11 points - nine from frees.
De La Salle went straight into the action, a point through Fitzgerald was followed by a Jack Twomey goal in the second minute. Twomey had to work for his green flag and his finish gave Aaron Shanahan no chance in the St Joseph’s goal.
Withycombe showed why he is so highly regarded, his two placed balls getting St Joseph’s up-and-running. And while Fitzgerald struck the next score to make it 1-2 to 0-2, a Withycombe-led fightback saw the Clare side hit six unanswered points - four from Withycombe and one each from Fionn Hickey and Colm Cleary, 0-8 to 1-2 at the first water break.
DLS weren’t making much headway up front, often outnumbered by the St Joseph’s defenders. However they did manage to regroup and, with two minutes to go to the interval they regained the lead, 1-7 to 0-9, thanks to the accuracy of Ballygunner’s Fitzgerald and a superb point from the wing by Twomey.
The last few minutes of the half was full of excitement, Fitzgerald and Cormac Cantwell keeping DLS in the ascendancy despite a late point from Withycombe to leave the half-time score, 1-9 to 0-11. As for the free-takers by then, Withycombe was on eight points while Fitzgerald shot seven.
Scores dried up during the third quarter, Fitzgerald (3) exchanged with Withycombe (2), to leave it 1-12 to 0-13 at the final water break.
It was evident this game was going to go down to the wire.
Points from Withycombe (2), Oisin Clune and Fionn Hickey gave St Joseph’s an edge.
But when Fitzgerald registered from a placed ball there was just one between them in the 59th minute.
A storming finish yet again, that yielded three points from Withycombe, ensured their place in the showdown against Ardscoil Rís in a fortnight.
S Withycombe (0-15, 0-12 frees), F Hickey (0-2), O Clune, R O’Connor, C Cleary (0-1 each).
P Fitzgerald (0-11, 0-9 frees), J Twomey (1-1), C Cantwell (0-1).
A Shanahan (Tulla); D Ryan (Tulla), A Hogan (Feakle), F Ryan (Tulla); M McMahon (O’Callaghan’s Mills), T Leyden (Tulla), O Clune (Feakle); R O’Connor (Feakle, Capt), D Keogh (Clooney-Quin); O O’Connor (Feakle), S Withycombe (Tulla), F Hickey (O’Callaghan’s Mills); C Cleary (O’Callaghan’s Mills), C O’Donnell (Broadford), E McMahon (Crusheen).
E Maxted (Clooney-Quin) for C O’Donnell (48).
C Troy (Ballygunner); K O’Sullivan (De La Salle), C O’Keeffe (Ballygunner), C Keane (De La Salle); A O’Neill (Ballygunner), P Murphy (Mooncoin, J-Capt), R Dobbyn (Ballyduff Lower); K Furlong (Ballygunner), C Cantwell (Ballygunner, J-Capt); S Pender (Roanmore), P Fitzgerald (Ballygunner), J Aylward (Mooncoin); J Twomey (De La Salle), A Keane (De La Salle), D Nolan (Ballygunner).
C Tobin (Ballygunner) for D Nolan (22), O Hartney (Roanmore) for A Keane (53), L Horgan (Ballygunner) for S Pender (53), E McSweeney (Ballygunner) for C Tobin (57), D Williams (Kilmacow) for C Keane (58 inj).
Eamonn Stapleton (Limerick).