St Colman’s College 0-14 Árdscoil Rís 1-10
It was title number 13 for St Colman’s College after they edged out Árdscoil Rís in the Dean Ryan Cup final at Kilmallock yesterday.
In a game that went all the way to the wire, a point from Clyda Rovers’ Ben Nyhan two minutes from time decided the outcome of this keenly contested U16.5 hurling encounter.
St Colman’s, whose last win in this competition was in 2017, had to fight tooth and nail before claiming the honours. Played in tough conditions, they showed tremendous character to claim the spoils because there was nothing to separate these two fine teams.
The sides were tied five times overall but St Colman’s got off to the worst possible start when Patrick O’Neill had the sliotar in the Fermoy net after a mere 30 seconds. A fantastic finish following swift interaction between Niall O’Farrell and Jack Golden.
The Limerick outfit added points from Shane O’Brien and O’Farrell before St Colman’s opened their scoring through Dan Roche. Leading scorer Roche from Ballyhooly was in outstanding form, bringing his side level after 20 minutes, 1-3 to 0-6.
Captain Ben Nodwell put St Colman’s into the lead for the first time approaching half time but O’Neill ensured parity at the break, 1-5 to 0-8. Árdscoil too were left to regret some wayward shooting.
The unfavourable conditions took its toll with just three scores in the third quarter, the Limerick school regaining the lead by a single point. They managed to keep their noses in front until a Roche free in the 54th minute tied matters again, 1-9 to 0-12.
With respective centre-backs Adam Walsh and Vince Harrington impressing, Shane O’Brien put Árdscoil Rís into the lead with a superb point from play but Roche was up for the challenge knocking over his 11th point to tie matters once more.
The action was end-to-end and a draw looked the most likely result. That was until Nyhan stepped forward with the winning score and time running out.
St Colman’s College have plenty more to play for, they advance to the All-Ireland semi-final next month against the Connacht champions.
Scorers for St Colman’s College: D Roche 0-11 (0-8 f), B Nyhan, B Nodwell and E Cashman 0-1 each.
Árdscoil Rís: P O’Neill 1-1, N O’Farrell 0-4 f, S O’Brien 0-3, D Lynch 0-2.
COLMAN'S: C McCarthy (Castlelyons); L Carey (Kilworth), C Hazlewood (Bride Rovers), D Barry (Bride Rovers); K Wallace (St Catherine’s), A Walsh (Bride Rovers), C Fitzpatrick (Fermoy); G O’Brien (St Catherine’s), C Tobin (Bride Roves); B Nyhan (Clyda Rovers), D Roche (Ballyhooly), M O’Driscoll (Watergrasshill); B Nodwell (Sarsfields, Capt), E Cashman (Bride Rovers), B Lehane (Watergrasshill).
Sub: R O’Riordan (Kilworth) for B Lehane (58).
ÁRDSCOIL: S Gully (Clonlara); B O’Keeffe (Murroe/Boher), J Fitzgerald (Na Piarsaigh), C Flynn (Sixmilebridge); J J Carey (Na Piarsaigh), V Harrington (Na Piarsaigh, Capt), C Scully (Dromin Athlacca); D Lynch (Na Piarsaigh), W Kearns (Na Piarsaigh); R O’Byrne (Crecora Manister), N O’Farrell (Broadford), J Golden(Monaleen); P O’Neill (Na Piarsaigh), D Kennedy (Sixmilebridge), S O’Brien (KIlmallock).
Sub: D Casey (Sixmilebridge) for R O’Byrne (55).
Referee: Noel Cosgrave (Tipperary).