Newtownshandrum 1-25 Blackrock 2-16
A STUNNING second-half performance against the wind guaranteed Newtownshandrum their place in the last eight of the Cork SHC at Mourne Abbey on Saturday.
Level at half-time, the north Cork side delivered a terrific display to oust last year’s semi-finalists. Tim O’Mahony and Jamie Coughlan in top form, accruing 1-18 between them.
O’Mahony, who picked up a leg injury early on, switched to attack before half-time where he proved to be a serious threat. His goal in the fourth quarter moved them six in front, while impeccable free-taker Coughlan shot an influential 13 points.
It was a devastating blow for Blackrock who only two years ago lost to Imokilly in the county final. They never hit full tilt, of which credit must go to Newtownshandrum, and when Andrew Murphy received a second yellow card with 10 minutes remaining, it largely summed up their day.
Blackrock started brightly, Daniel Meaney racing through for their opening goal. They kept in front until the 20th minute, by which time Newtownshandrum tied proceedings, 1-6 to 0-9. Coughlan, John Geary, Twomey, Sean Griffin, Cormac O’Brien and David O’Connor finding the target.
Crucially, Newtownshandrum stayed with Blackrock. They had, however, fallen two points in arrears but stoppage time points from Coughlan and O’Mahony left the score, 1-10 to 0-13.
O’Mahony resumed with a heavily strapped thigh.
Nonetheless, he would prove to be a handful as Coughlan got the scoreboard ticking through his accurate free taking. A major statement of intent was made when they took the lead.
In contrast, scores were scarce for Blackrock. The reigning Division 1 league champions were just a point adrift when Shane O’Keeffe and Michael O’Halloran pointed midway through the half, 1-14 to 0-18.
It was tight and tense.
Newtownshandrum then put their stamp on proceedings with O’Mahony finding the net. O’Keeffe pulled a goal back for Blackrock from a free but Newtownshandrum saw it out.
Scorers for Newtownshandrum: J Coughlan 0-13 (0-10 f, 0-1 65, 0-1 sl), T O’Mahony 1-5, J Geary 0-2, C O’Brien, C Twomey, D O’Connor, S Griffin and C Griffin 0-1 each.
Blackrock: M O’Halloran 0-6 (0-3 f), S O’Keeffe 1-2 (1-0 f), D Meaney 1-0, T Deasy 0-2, D O’Farrell, A Connolly, G O’Regan, S Murphy, C Cormack and J O’Sullivan 0-1 each.
NEWTOWN: J Bowles; J O’Mahony, M Ryan, K O’Sullivan; D Guiney, T O’Mahony, D Hawe; C O’Brien, C Twomey (c); C Griffin, D O’Connor, J Lane; S Griffin, J Geary, J Coughlan.
Subs: K Coughlan for C O’Brien (15-21 bs), P O’Sullivan for D Hawe (half-time), J Twomey for S Griffin (43), D Stack for C Twomey (49 inj), M Thompson for J Geary (62), K Coughlan for J Lane (62 inj).
BLACKROCK: D O’Shea; J Cashman, G Norberg, J Ryan; N Cashman (Capt), A O’Callaghan, A Murphy; D O’Farrell, D Meaney; S O’Keeffe, J O’Sullivan, M O’Halloran; A Connolly, C Cormack, T Deasy.
Subs: K O’Keeffe for A Connolly (44), G O’Regan for C Cormack (44), S Murphy for D O’Farrell (55).
Referee: Simon Stokes (Tullylease).