Newcestown 2-24 Cloyne 3-9
NEWCESTOWN'S third-quarter dominance laid the foundation for victory over Cloyne at Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday, ensuring their place in the quarter-finals of the Co-op SuperStores Cork SAHC.
With both teams having lost to Kanturk and beaten Killeagh, this was effectively a knockout game, though Newcestown had the slight scoring-difference advantage, meaning a draw would have sufficed.
Having had a good start, Newcestown fell behind to their East Cork opponents after the first-half water break and they trailed by 2-5 to 0-10 at half-time. However, on the resumption, they reeled off six straight points and their narrowest lead from there to the end would be three.
They now face Bride Rovers in the last eight – though not before a tough premier senior football clash with Carbery Rangers – and Jim O’Sullivan’s side had a lot to be encouraged by.
There were eight different Newcestown scorers and, perhaps surprisingly, Luke Meade wasn’t one of those, the Cork star asked to play at centre-back to curb Paudie O’Sullivan and doing a good job in that regard.
His brother Jack was a stand-out at wing-forward with Colm Dinneen and Tadhg Twomey – scorer of their first goal – linking well at midfield while free-taker Cian Healy contributed ten points.
After the hard-working James Kelleher had opened the scoring for Newcestown, Killeagh had an instant response as Noel Cahill capitalised on a mix-up in defence to fire home.
While Newcestown responded well to lead by 0-6 to 1-2 at the water-break, Cloyne upped things when play resumed. Cahill pilfered his second goal after a good delivery from Dave Jermyn and points from Keith Dennehy and Paudie O’Sullivan had them 2-4 to 0-6 in front.
Newcestown never panicked and Luke Meade’s pass allowed full-forward Seán O’Donovan to get the first of five points from play, with two from Healy cutting the lead to a point.
That was still the margin at the break but the complexion of the game changed totally after half-time, with Healy (three), Jack Meade, O’Donovan and David Buckley on target to open up a five-point lead.
By the water-break, Cloyne had cut that deficit to four, 0-17 to 2-7, while Newcestown goalkeeper Cathal Wilson saved well from a Mikey Cahill shot. Brian Walsh brought Cloyne back to three points after the break but on 51 Newcestown solidified their advantage as Jack Meade’s pass found Tadgh Twomey in space and he drove forward before sending a low shot past Dónal Óg Cusack.
One from Healy and two from O’Donovan put Newcestown nine ahead and Cloyne’s task before harder when they lost Éanna Motherway to a red card. They did have some hope when sub Diarmuid O’Sullivan grabbed a late goal after his brother Paudie’s free was blocked on the line by Micheál McSweeney.
When that was followed by a Paudie O’Sullivan free, it was 1-21 to 3-9 but Newcestown finished strongly, Cárthach Keane’s goal helping them to win by 12.
Scorers for Newcestown: C Healy 0-10 (0-7 f), S O’Donovan 0-5, J Meade 0-3 (0-1 sl), T Twomey 1-1, C Keane 1-0, D Buckley 0-2, F Keane, J Kelleher, E Kenneally 0-1 each.
Cloyne: N Cahill 2-0, P O’Sullivan 0-3 (0-1 f), D O’Sullivan 1-0, B Walsh, M Cahill (f) 0-2 each, K Dennehy, A Walsh (0-1 f) 0-1 each.
NEWCESTOWN: C Wilson; G O’Donovan, C Twomey, M McSweeney; C O’Neill, L Meade, M Courtney; T Twomey, C Dinneen; D Buckley, J Kelleher, J Meade; F Keane, S O’Donovan, C Healy.
Subs: D Twomey for Buckley (53), C Keane for Healy (58), E Collins for Kelleher, E Kenneally for O’Neill (both 60).
CLOYNE: D Óg Cusack; D Jermyn, S Beausang, B Fleming; J Hallihan, B Minihane, É Motherway; K Dennehy, A Walsh; C Cahill, P O’Sullivan, C Mullins; M Cahill, B Walsh, N Cahill.
Subs: D O’Sullivan for C Cahill (37), A Sherlock for Mullis (45), B O’Shea for M Cahill (50), C Motherway for B Walsh (56).
Referee: C O’Regan (Ballyhea).