Éire Óg 3-21 Youghal 3-11
ÉIRE Óg live to fight another day in the Co-Op Superstores Premier Intermediate Hurling Championship as they emphatically defeated Youghal 3-21 to 3-11 in their relegation play-off in Caherlag on Saturday afternoon.
A sensational display from full forward Lar Considine, which saw him score 1-6 of his side’s overall total - all from open play - was enough to maintain the Ovens club’s Premier Intermediate status for next year and relegate Youghal in the process.
This enthralling encounter was sparked into life by Éire Óg inside the opening minute as not only did they notch the first point of the game through Ronan O’Toole, they grabbed the first goal of the game too thanks to a low drive from Colm O’Callaghan.
Youghal, to their credit, quickly responded with a point from the excellent Ciaran O’Mahony at the beginning of the second minute before Brett Moloney split the uprights with the first of what would be five well-struck frees.
But they couldn’t deal with the pace and the physicality of their opponent’s forwards as Lar Considine soon raised a second green flag for Éire Óg to help make it 2-7 to 0-6 by the 20th minute.
Youghal though soon snatched a lifeline when corner-forward Chris Mangan fired the loose sliotar past the keeper from close range.
And amazingly the gap between these two sides would only be one point heading into the halftime break as Sean Smiddy bundled the ball across the line after James O’Mahony’s initial effort was saved, 2-9 to 2-8.
Similar to how they started the first half, the red and yellows started the second period brightly and they would tally six of the next seven points with Kevin Hallissey continuing to show his quality from dead ball situations, 2-15 to 2-9.
And then at the beginning of the third quarter, they would add their third goal of the afternoon to all but seal the win with Colm O’Callagher charging past the keeper and firing home to complete his brace before his teammates added three more points on the bounce, 3-18 to 2-9.
Youghal were now just playing for pride and they would at least draw level in terms of goals scored when Sean Smiddy also completed his own personal double late on with a deflected effort but it wasn’t enough to save them from dropping to the division below.
L Considine 1-6, K Hallissey 0-8 (0-7 f, 0-1 65), C O’Callaghan 2-0, J Cooper 0-3, R O’Toole, J Cooper, D Coakley, O O’Shea 0-1 each.
S Smiddy 2-1 (0-1 f), B Moloney 0-6 (0-5 f), C Mangan 1-0, C O’Mahony 0-3, R McMahon 0-1.
D Desmond; D Kirwan, J Kelleher, J Mullins; D McCarthy, D O’Herlihy, D Dineen; R O’Toole, Joe Cooper; D Coakley, K Hallissey, John Cooper; C O’Callaghan, L Considine, J Kelleher.
M Brady for J Kelleher (22), O O‘Shea for J Kelleher (ht), D Foley for D Coakley (48), J Sheehan for John Cooper (58), D Casey for C O’Callaghan (64).
J Corcoran; E Cronin, J Ormond, M Farrell; J Cooper, C Geary, K Browne; M Breathnach, R Coady; B Moloney, C O’Mahony, S Smiddy; J O’Mahony, O Hill, C Mangan.
N Roche for M Breathnach (40), R McMahon for O Hill (51).
Michael O’Mahony (Courcey Rovers).