St Colman’s dig deep to edge Thurles CBS in thriller

St Colman’s College, Fermoy 2-12 Thurles CBS 1-13: St Colman’s College are now joint top of the Dean Ryan Cup roll of honour after they recorded a thrilling two-point victory over Thurles CBS in the replayed final at the Gaelic Grounds on Saturday.
St Colman’s dig deep to edge Thurles CBS in thriller

They join Thurles CBS and St Flannan’s College with 12 titles each.

Thirteen years has passed since St Colman’s last title in this Munster Colleges U16½ hurling grade, and just like the drawn encounter, this match ebbed and flowed from the opening whistle. However, a stunning finish transformed a three-point deficit into a two-point lead.

A goal from sub Dylan O’Connor a minute from time, followed by stoppage time points from Eoin Carey and James Kearney, killed off the brave challenge of Thurles CBS.

St Colman’s mentor Jimmy Condon — a Tipperary man — praised his charges for their never-say-die spirit.

“We made it happen through the hard work and determination of these boys. We had every belief they were going to come up with whatever was needed to win.

“I have been in St Colman’s now for over seven years and there is unbelievable work being done by the clubs around the school, and by the school itself. This is a culmination of that.”

Thurles CBS overcame a tentative start to lead at the interval by 0-8 to 0-5. Scores might have been scarce, but there was no let-up in work-rate. The Premier outfit trailed by two points early on before a run of six unanswered points, four from Darren Flood, put them ahead while Conleith Ryan kept St Colman’s in touch.

By the three-quarter mark, Thurles CBS edged ahead, 0-10 to 0-8. As both schools got a sniff of the finish line, the fourth quarter caught fire. The shackles were finally thrown off after Brian Roche pounced for a St Colman’s goal in the 46th minute.

Sensing the game getting away from them, Thurles CBS then delivered the next three points, 0-13 to 1-9. A magnificent point from Carey levelled matters.

But, within minutes we had two quick-fire goals. First, Kieran Moloney for Thurles CBS, but O’Connor’s swift response was immense. Deadlock once more, 2-10 to 1-13. An excellent Carey free and a point from Kearney saw St Colman’s home. The journey continues for these fine young hurlers with an All-Ireland semi-final against Gort to look forward to.

Scorers for St Colman’s:

B Roche (1-2), E Carey (0-5, 0-3 frees), D O’Connor (1-0), C Ryan (0-3, 0-2 frees), J Kearney and C Barry (0-1 each).

Scorers for Thurles CBS:

D Flood (0-9, 0-8 frees), K Moloney (1-0), M Hackett (0-2), K Ryan and J Lanigan (0-1 each).

ST COLMAN’S:

B Hogan (Bride Rovers); L Aherne (Fermoy), J Scannell (Fermoy), J Mannix (Bride Rovers); D O’Leary (Watergrasshill), E Roche (Bride Rovers, vice-captain), J Kenny (Castlelyons); E Carey (Kilworth), B Roche (Bride Rovers, vice-captain); J Kearney (Castlelyons), C Ryan (Bride Rovers), J Molloy (Fermoy); C Barry (Bride Rovers), P O’Leary (Watergrasshill), D Morrison (Castlelyons).

Subs:

D O’Connor (Castletownroche) for C Barry (43), P O’Flynn (Bride Rovers) for J Molloy (45), D O’Neill (Castletownroche) for D Morrison (59).

THURLES CBS:

K Bracken (Durlas Óg); J Hickey (Emeralds), P Melbourne (Moycarkey-Borris), J Synott (Roscrea); K Hayes (Moycarkey-Borris), Z Johnson (Moycarkey-Borris), K Larkin (Moyne-Templetuohy); K Moloney (Durlas Óg), J Morrissey (Moycarkey-Borris); K Ryan (Upperchurch-Drombane), D Flood (Moycarkey-Borris), D Tynan (Roscrea); J Lanigan (Durlas Óg), P Doyle (Galmoy), M Hackett (Moycarkey-Borris).

Subs:

E Purcell (Durlas Óg) for J Lanigan (43), J Kirwan (Moycarkey-Borris) for P Doyle (50).

Referee:

D O’Callaghan (Limerick).

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