Shandrum 1-23 Kiltha Óg 5-11
WHAT a game of hurling!
A point in the third minute of injury time by Shandrum’s Eoin O’Mahony sent this enthralling Rebel Óg Premier 2 Minor final at Páirc Uí Rinn to a replay.
This had everything and, inspired by Cork minor All-Star Jack Leahy, who shot 13 points, and John Ahern who chipped in with five from play, the Castlemartyr and Dungourney amalgamation were the dominant team for long periods.
For Shandrum, a combination of Newtownshandrum and Dromina, they worked the sliotar through the lines even when they were struggling and were rewarded for their patience and ability to raise green flags.
In the opening minute, Kiltha Óg’s classy forward Leahy showed his pace and accuracy to split the uprights with sheer precision.
The East Cork outfit hit three unanswered points and should have raised a green flag in the sixth minute when Billy McGann flicked a shot inches wide of the post.
McGann was on hand to nail Kiltha Óg’s fifth point and Shandrum went six points behind when Leahy landed his third point.
Shandrum needed inspiration and they got it in the 10th minute when Robert Troy hit a magnificent shot against the post, with Cillian Quinn on hand to guide the ball to the empty net.
Following a Kieran Murphy point from a free, Kiltha Óg trailed 0-8 to 1-1 at the water break.
Leahy chalked up his fifth point on the resumption but consecutive Murphy points reduced the deficit to three points. Just when Shandrum looked to be back in the game, they were punished when sloppy defending allowed Colin Murphy to slot home a goal from close range.
That gave Kiltha Óg more confidence and they looked in a good position at half-time, with a 1-13 to 1-5 lead.
The second half was pulsating and two Kiltha Óg goals from Cillian Quinn and Colin Quaid set the scene for an explosive finish.
Kiltha Óg were relying on the deadly shooting of Leahy to keep them in control but in the end, their defence looked vulnerable when the sliotar was sent in around the square.
When Murphy and Stephen Minihane added further goals in the 46th and 51st minutes, it brought the teams level.
Kiltha Óg still looked likely winners but points from Kieran Murphy (63) and Eoin O’Mahony at the death ensured Shandrum’s brave effort over the hour was rewarded.
Scorers for Kiltha Óg: J Leahy 0-13 (0-6 f, 0-1 65), J Aherne 0-5, B McGann 0-3, C Murphy 1-0, O Sweetman, D Leahy 0-1 each.
Shandrum: K Murphy 1-7 (0-3 f), C Quinn 2-0, C Quaid, S Minihane 1-0 each, E O’Mahony 0-2, J Murphy, R Troy 0-1 each.
SHANDRUM:D O’Connell; S O’Leary, T McCarthy, D O’Riordan; R Troy, B Collins, C O’Brien; E O’Connor, R Troy; C Quinn, E O’Mahony, C Quaid; K Murphy, S Minihane, S O’Riordan.
Subs: J Murphy for S O’Riordan (35), E Walsh for D O’Riordan (45), C Dunne for C Quinn (49).
KILTHA ÓG: P Flynn; C Murphy, P Daly, S Morgan; D Lynch, S Geaney, D Leahy; C Murphy, S Ryan; C O’Callaghan, J Ahern, B McGinn; Colin Murphy, O Sweetman, J Leahy.
Subs: B Peddler McCarthy for S Ryan (43), K Cody-Byrne for C Murphy (47), R Harney for O Sweetman (57).
Referee: Brian Coniry (Crosshaven).