Newtownshandrum 6-13 Newcestown 1-21
NEWTOWN booked their place in Round 3 of the Senior Hurling Championship where they will face Blackrock after a hard-fought victory in yesterday evening’s encounter against Newcestown at Páirc Uí Rinn.
After their one-point defeat to Bishopstown in the opening round, the former county champions, who had dominated this grade in the early noughties, gave notice that they will be no easy pushover for reigning league champions Blackrock in next week’s third-round encounter at Mourneabbey.
After a poor start, Newtown upped their game and held on for a seven-point victory against a Newcestown side that battled to the finish.
A blistering opening by Newcestown despite playing into the wind saw them race into a six-point lead after eight minutes with Luke Meade, Sean O’Donovan, Tadhg Twomey, Eoin Kelly, and Colm Dinneen all scoring from play.
Jamie Coughlan opened Newtownshandrum’s account with a pointed free and this was quickly followed by a Tim O’Mahony score.
Twomey extended Newcestown lead before Darragh Howe set up Jamie Coughlan for a goal with a long-range shot.
With Newcestown leading by three points entering the final seven minutes the half-finished in a welter of excitement with a four-goal blitz.
Mattie Ryan found the Newcestown net with a long free that deceived everyone to tie up the scores.
Coughlan then cracked in two goals sandwiched between a Cathrach Keane goal for the Carbery side to leave Newtownshandrum ahead 4-6 at 1-11 at half time.
From the restart, Daniel Twomey pointed for Newcestown but from the puck-out Coughlan set up substitute Johnny Geary for a goal.
Cormac O’Brien and Conor Griffin extended Newtownshandrum’s lead inside the opening three minutes.
A Jack Meade sideline cut kept Newcestown in the game but points from Paul O’Sullivan and Tim O’Mahony had the North Cork side ahead 5-10 to 1-14 at the end of the third quarter.
Back came Newcestown with four frees from Twomey and another by Luke Meade reduced the gap to three points with six minutes remaining.
In an exciting finish, the sides traded points until the last puck of the game saw Coughlan assist Geary for his second goal to ensure victory.
Scorers for Newtownshandrum: J Coughlan 3-3 (0-2 f), J Geary 2-1, M Ryan 1-1 (1-1 f), C O’Brien 0-3, C Griffin 0-3, T O’Mahony 0-2.
Newcestown: D Twomey 0-5 (0-3 f), L Meade 0-4, S O’Donovan 0-3, E Kelly 0-3, T Twomey 0-3, C Keane 1-0, C Dinneen 0-2, J Meade 0-1 sl.
NEWTOWN: J Bowles; J O’Mahony, M Ryan, K O’Sullivan; D Guiney, T O’Mahony, M Thompson (c); C O’Brien, D Hawe; J Twomey, D O’Connor, J Lane; S Griffin, C Griffin, J Coughlan.
Subs: P O’Sullivan for Thompson (9 inj), J Geary for Twomey (19), D Stack.
NEWCESTOWN: K Kelly; M Courtney, G Murphy, N Murray; F Keane, M McSweeney, C O’Neill; J Meade (c), L Meade; C Dinneen, C Keane, T Twomey; E Kelly, S O’Donovan D Twomey.
Subs: J Crowley for Courtney (37), T Horgan for Kelly (43), D Buckley for T Twomey (59).
Referee: Joe Larkin (Ballinora).