Glen Rovers 2-20 St Finbarr’s 1-15
GLEN ROVERS are through to the final of the Carrigaline Court Hotel P1 Minor Hurling Championship after an impressive victory at Páirc Uí Rinn yesterday.
Goals in each half from Nathan Goulding were crucial to the Glen, champions two years ago, sealing their place in the decider against the winners of next week’s clash between Ballincollig and Midleton.
The Glen opened the scoring inside the first minute when Evan Murphy fired over a free, but that was quickly cancelled out by his opposite number Brian Hayes at the other end.
Hayes almost scored the first goal of the match moments later, but his powerful effort sailed wide of the far post shortly before Rovers’ Darragh Milner saw his strike saved by keeper Jack McCarthy.
Rovers hit three wides in the opening five minutes but they soon found their composure.
They had Evan Murphy to thank as the full-forward scored four unanswered points, only two of which were from frees, to give his side a commanding lead.
Things got even better for the North Cork club midway through the first half when they scored the first goal of the game through Nathan Goulding.
The lively corner-forward cleverly turned past his marker before coolly rolling the ball past the keeper from a tight angle to give his side a seven-point advantage, 1-5 to 0-1.
The Barrs continued to battle, and they reduced the deficit with two quickfire points from Ben Cunningham (a free) and Brian Hayes.
The two teams soon swapped a couple of points each but it was Glen Rovers who finished the first half stronger, grabbing four of the next six points in the match — the pick of the bunch coming from right-half-forward Ryan Long — to ensure they led by 1-11 to 0-7 at the interval.
The Blues started the second period in excellent form. Sam Cunningham split the uprights and four perfectly executed frees from Ben Cunningham moved them to within two points.
That would be as close as they would get as Cork minor Luke Horgan raised two white flags to settle his side’s nerves heading into the final quarter.
Barrs responded with a Jack Cahalane point, but the Glen all but sealed the win when Nathan Goulding scored his second goal.
The leaders outscored the Togher club seven points to two before injury time when Ben Cunningham blasted a free into the net for a late consolation.
Scorers for Glen Rovers: E Murphy 0-8 (0-5 f, 0-1 65), N Goulding 2-1, R Long, L Horgan 0-3 each, L Quilligan, E O’Leary 0-2 each, J O’Driscoll 0-1.
St Finbarr’s: B Cunningham 1-9 f, B Hayes 0-3, E Twomey, S Cunningham, J Cahalane 0-1 each.
GLEN ROVERS: C Long; S Corcoran, G Marshall, E Downey; A Lordan, C O’Sullivan, G Mulcahy; J O’Driscoll, L Quilligan; R Long, L Horgan, D Murphy; D Milner, E Murphy, N Goulding.
Subs: D Long for C O’Sullivan (h-t), E O’Leary for J O’Driscoll (45).
ST FINBARR’S: J McCarthy; D O’Sullivan, R Fitzpatrick, S Dwane; D Callanan, JJ O’Connor, M Ahern; B Cunningham, G Gowen; E Twomey, J Linehan, D O’Sullivan; S Cunningham, B Hayes, J Cahalane.
Sub: B O’Connor for D O’Sullivan (27).
Referee: Niall O’Neill.