PIFC: Three goals help Aghada see off battling Na Piarsaigh

Kevin O'Hanlon hit 2-1 for the victors, who move into the Premier Intermediate quarter-finals
PIFC: Three goals help Aghada see off battling Na Piarsaigh

Aghada's Danny Creedon shields the ball against Kevin O'Sullivan, Newmarket, earlier on in the PIFC campaign. Picture: John Tarrant

Aghada 3-7 Na Piarsaigh 1-9

AGHADA are through to the knockout stages of the Bon Secours PIFC as they defeated a spirited Na Piarsaigh in Carrigtwohill on Saturday evening.

A scintillating start, inspired by Kevin O’Hanlon who claimed 2-1 on the night, proved to be the difference as Aghada progress to the next stage while Na Piarsaigh crash out.

Aghada raced out of the traps here and by just the 11th minute they had a commanding 11-point lead thanks to some ruthless finishing from their forwards.

The first score of the game came inside two minutes with Cian Fleming doing the honours with a superb point from distance, which was quickly followed by his fellow corner-forward Kevin O’Hanlon splitting the uprights moments later.

The pace and precision of their attacking moves meant that they soon found more space close to their opponent’s goal, which they quickly took advantage of.

Their first goal came in the seventh minute when the excellent O’Hanlon cleverly punched into the net as Diarmuid Byrne’s strike dropped short and just two minutes later Shane Bennett raised another green flag as he slotted home from the penalty spot after he had been fouled.

Their best goal though was their third as following a sweeping move involving Cian Fleming and Aaron Berry, O’Hanlon rifled the ball into the top right corner for his second goal of the evening.

But Na Piarsaigh, to their credit, refused to give up and they would rally to notch five of the next six scores, including a well-taken goal by midfielder Eoin Sheehan to give themselves hope, 3-3 to 1-4 at the beginning of the second period.

Goalkeeper Alan Hogan was switched into the forward line as Na Piarsaigh desperately went in search of a dramatic comeback but although he scored two great points Aghada, led by Barrett, just kept adding to their tally to see out the game by four points.

Scorers for Aghada: K O’Hanlon 2-1, S Barrett 1-2 (1-0 pen), D Creedon 0-2 f, D Byrne, C Fleming 0-1 each.

Na Piarsaigh: E Sheehan 1-0, P Guest 0-3, A Hogan 0-2, K Buckley (f), P Rourke, S Forde, A Keating 0-1 each.

AGHADA: C O’Shea; J Tyan, J McDonnell, K O’Shea; A Stafford, J O’Donoghue, D Collins; D Phelan, D Byrne; T Hartnett, D Creedon, A Berry; K O’Hanlon, S Bennett, C Fleming.

Subs: P O’Neill for A Stafford (38), M Russell for J O’Donoghue (51), N Cunningham for A Berry (54), A Berry for D Phelan (55, bs), D Leahy for A Berry (60).

NA PIARSAIGH: A Hogan; G Healy, T Lawton, P Murphy; A Higgins, E Gunning, K Power; E Sheehan, C Bowen; G Joyce, S Forde, K Buckley; A Keating, P Guest, P Rourke.

Subs: D Maguire for K Power (5 inj), K Waters for P Murphy (40), C O’Mahony for T Lawton (45), E Sheehan for C Bowen (54).

Referee: Aidan Hyland (Kilworth).

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