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 Daragh Ahern, Midleton, fires past Alex Lync and DJ Coffee, Na Piarsaigh. Picture: Jim Coughlan.
Daragh Ahern, Midleton, fires past Alex Lync and DJ Coffee, Na Piarsaigh. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Midleton have too much for Na Piarsaigh in lively U14 P1 hurling final

Midleton 2-11 Na Piarsaigh 1-6

MIDLETON were crowned Carrigaline Court Hotel Premier 1 U14 county champions after their win over Na Piarsaigh at Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday.

The east Cork side went in front after seven minutes and never lost it again. By half-time they had built up a seven-point lead and looked like they were going to walk away with it.

But credit to Na Piarsaigh, they showed the reason they are a hurling force with a superb second-half performance, and just four minutes into that half had that lead down to two points.

But credit must then go to Midleton, who never panicked, came through that intense period, to emerge deserving winners in the end.

Whilst their forwards will get the plaudits it was their defence that was key to their victory. Led by the likes of Dara Scanlon and Tadgh O’Leary Hayes, younger brother of Cork star, Sean, they made it difficult all through for the Piarsaigh attack.

 Tadhg O'Leary Hayes, Midleton, battling Ross O'Sullivan, Na Piarsaigh. Picture: Jim Coughlan.
Tadhg O'Leary Hayes, Midleton, battling Ross O'Sullivan, Na Piarsaigh. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

And on the odd occasion they got through they found Zak Smith in top form goal for the Magpies. Up front Daragh Fitzgerald excelled.

Whilst Piarsaigh will be disappointed to lose they had some quality displays from the likes of Sean Paul Cooke and DJ Coffee, while Ross O’Sullivan couldn’t be faulted after hitting 1-4.

O’Sullivan opened the scoring for Piarsaigh with Scanlon replying for Midleton. Peter Lehane put Piarsaigh back in front, with Daragh Fitzgerald equalising. With seven minutes gone a brilliant run from Eoin Higgins saw him score a great individual goal, to make it 1-2 to 0-2.

They quickly added points, two from Fitzgerald, along with one from Moloney before O’Sullivan pulled a point back for Piarsaigh. But late points from Lang and Fitzgerald saw the Magpies lead 1-7 to 0-3 at half-time.

But Piarsaigh weren’t going away easily, with O’Sullivan scoring a goal and a point, along with a point from Lynch, to make it a two-point game. Midleton didn’t panic and responded with a goal of their own through Fitzgerald.

He was on target again and with five minutes to go, they led 2-10 to 1-7. Again Piarsaigh never gave up, with points from Coffee and O’Sullivan. Fittingly Fitzgerald got the last score though.

Scorers for Midleton: D Fitzgerald 1-7 (0-6 f), E Higgins 1-0, D Scanlon 0-2 (0-1 f, 0-1 65), A Moloney, N Lang 0-1 each.

Na Piarsaigh: R O’Sullivan 1-4 (0-1 f), A Lynch, DJ Coffee 0-2 each, P Lehane 0-1.

MIDLETON: Z Smith; D Ahern, D Scanlon, A Collins; C Cronin, T O’Leary Hayes, E Fraser; N Lang, A Moloney; D Fitzgerald, C Lambe, T Bohan; J McSweeney, E Higgins, E McGrath.

Subs: A Howard for E Fraser.

NA PIARSAIGH: B Kelleher; E Cronin, A Burke, P McGrath; A O’Driscoll, P Hosford, DJ Coffee; S P Cooke, P Lehane; R Lyons, R O’Sulllivan, C Higgins; C Cronin, A Lynch, B Dwyer Harrington.

Subs: K Galvin for Cronin, J MsSweeney for R Lyons, D Philpott for B Dwyer Harrington, J Hutchinson for C Higgins.

Referee: Tony O’Brien, Ballygarvan.