Kelleher fires Carrigaline past Aghada and into clash with Kilworth

Kelleher fires Carrigaline past Aghada and into clash with Kilworth
Brian Kelleher opens the scoring for Carrigaline against Aghada. Picture: Larry Cummins

Carrigaline 3-21 Aghada 2-10

MOMENTUM can be a great asset in the sporting arena and so it proved for the hurlers of Carrigaline on Saturday evening at Riverstown when they delivered an emphatic result over Aghada to secure their place in the last eight of the PIHC.

This was a fine victory for them, coming on the back of an equally good performance against Youghal a week earlier.

A return of 3-21 told its own story of how they recovered from a rather slow start to be home and hosed long before the final whistle sounded.

They were assertive in defence, once they settled down, were industrious in midfield, and did the business up front where Brian Kelleher was outstanding and he ended the hour with 2-10 alongside his name.

He was a very influential presence all through and some of his scores were very well executed.

Killian McIntyre posted a return of 1-1, David Drake and Rob O’Shea got some good points between them, as did corner-back Chris Vaughan and sub Eanna Desmond.

Back in defence, David Griffin and Kevin Kavanagh impressed while Wes O’Brien’s experience in the middle of the field was a factor too.

Things didn’t go as planned for them in the opening sequences and if Aghada had availed of a few good, scoring opportunities things might have been a lot different.

The east Cork side led by 0-4 to 0-0 after 10 minutes with Mark McCarthy, Will Leahy, and Cha Terry splitting the posts.

However, three minutes later they were behind after Carrigaline slammed in a brace of goals from Kelleher and McIntyre and from that moment, Aghada were chasing the game.

Kelleher, O’Shea, Drake, and Steve Williamson all registered points for the Carrigdhoun team and in the final 20 minutes of the half, Aghada could only manage two points from Leahy and Aaron Stafford.

It was 2-6 to 0-6 at the interval and when they came back out it was very much a case of Carrigaline taking up where they had left off.

They were 2-13 to 0-7 to the good after 40 minutes and things did not look good at all for Aghada at that juncture.

They were depending on Leahy to get their scores from placed balls and things went from bad to worse for them not too long afterwards when the hugely competent Kelleher drilled in a fine third goal for Carrigaline.

The game had now become very much a damage limitation exercise for Aghada and they lost McCarthy to a red card following an incident out near the sideline.

To be fair, they battled away and were rewarded when Leahy fired home a goal from a free as we entered the game’s closing minutes.

Pearse O’Neill got a second for them shortly afterwards, but it was all too little and too late, though Carrigaline will be disappointed with those concessions.

But they got going again and they saw out the game in very impressive fashion.

Sub Desmond rifled over two fine points, Kelleher pointed a 65 and corner-back Vaughan got in for his second point of the hour.

Aghada could really have no complaints at the end, but they will reflect on those missed goal chances when they had them early on.

But this night in Riverstown belonged firmly to Carrigaline and this was a well-balanced display which will put them in a confident frame of mind facing into their quarter-final collision with Kilworth next Saturday in Watergrasshill.

And they have even more momentum behind them now.

Scorers for Carrigaline: B Kelleher 2-10 (0-2 f, 0-2 65), K McIntyre 1-1, D Drake (0-1 sl) 0-2, R O’Shea, E Desmond, C Vaughan 0-2 each, W O’Brien, S Willamson 0-1 each.

Aghada: W Leahy 1-6 (1-3 f, 0-1 65), P O’Neill 1-1, M McCarthy, C Terry, A Staffod 0-1 each.

CARRIGALINE: R Foster, L Condon, D Griffin, C Vaughan, K O’Connell, S Williamson, Kevin Kavanagh, W O’Brien, J McCarthy, K Dwane, R O’Shea, D Drake, B Kelleher, P Roynane, K McIntyre.

Subs: E Desmond for Dwane (40), D McBarron for McIntyre (49), C Barry for Rpynane (49), Kieran Kavanagh for Condon (52), J Maher for Drake (58).

AGHADA: C O’Shea J McDonald, D Rice, A O’Connell, J O’Donoghue, McCarthy, A Stafford, T Hartnett, M Russell, A Berry, W Leahy, D Creedon, K O’Donoghue, P O’Neill, C Terry.

Sub: R Slye for Stafford.

Referee: J Larkin, Ballinora.

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