FÉ 14 PREMIER 2 HURLING CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL
Carrigtwohill v Na Piarsaigh in Carrigaline on Friday 8th September 2017
Carrigtwohill 0-07 Na Piarsaigh 0-08
This was a heartbreaking evening for Carrig’s young hurlers who came so close to winning the Premier 2 hurling championship, in what was a keenly contested and hard fought low-scoring contest.
Na Piarsaigh opened the scoring in the first minute with a point from play. They added another point from play eight minutes later after an incredible save by Adam Rooney and made it 0-03 to no score on the ten minute mark. Rooney came to the rescue again midway through the half, saving a shot from point-blank range with a dive to his near post. Na Piarsaigh missed the resultant ‘65’ and only for the efforts of the young goalkeeper, the game could well have been a done deal at that stage. The city side followed up immediately with a pointed free and when they registered another one from play in the 18th minute, it looked very much like the five point lead would be too much for Carrig to reel in, given how low-scoring this game was.
Carrigtwohill came to life in the final ten minutes of the first half with two pointed frees by Alex Kidney, the second one resulting from a foul on David Joseph after a trademark run from the wing. The half ended with drama at both ends of the pitch. On the stroke of 30 minutes, Na Piarsaigh hit the crossbar with a rasping shot that even eluded the exceptional Adam Rooney. Carrig then missed a penalty (after a foul on Calvin Fitzgerald) three minutes into injury time.
HT: Carrigtwohill 0-02 Na Piarsaigh 0-05
David Joseph closed the gap to two points with a great point straight off the stick after yet another surging run through the middle of the Na Piarsaigh defence. Na Piarsaigh responded with two good points from play to make it 0-07 to 0-03 ten minutes into the second half. Carrig then hit their period of dominance, scoring a point apiece from John Nolan (play), Justin Oke (free) and Alex Kidney, who hit a lovely point, assisted by David Joseph on another probing run. This left the minimum between the sides with eight minutes remaining and the game was now very much in the balance. Carrigtwohill got the equalising score courtesy of a Justin Oke free with four minutes of normal time remaining. The game now entered that frantic stage, with both teams scrapping for possession and an attempt to get that winning score. Na Piarsaigh got a very good point from play in the third minute of injury time and credit must go to their young player for his effort. Unfortunately for Carrigtwohill, this proved to be the clinching score. Na Piarsaigh’s scenes of jubilation on the sound of the final whistle were in contrast to the very visible disappointment on the faces of the young dejected Carrig players.
Well done to the Carrigtwohill players on their valiant efforts – they can hold their heads very high. Every single player put in an enormous effort and it was not for lack of endeavour that they fell that tiny bit short. Great credit must go to manager, Seán Barrett, who has been involved with this team since they started out at U7. A word of praise also for the selectors and coaches (some of whom have also been involved with this team from the outset) who put a massive effort into the preparations for this championship. It was very noteworthy how calm these mentors were on the line in tight matches, going right back as far as the replay against Éire Óg. They are an example to all in the Juvenile Club and are a template for how to support and encourage young players from the sideline.
The team picked themselves up and went back to the Community Centre after the game for pizza. Team captain, Jonathan Spillane spoke very well and thanked the coaches (and the club for laying on the pizzas, after a gentle reminder from his mother – sure isn’t that what all our mammys do!).
As the saying goes, ‘what does not kill you makes you stronger.’ We have no doubt that this promising bunch of young hurlers will bounce back and will hopefully see championship success in the not too distant future.
Team: Adam Rooney, Niall Harte, Jonathan Spillane, Cian Murphy, Cian O’Riordan, Neil Coughlan, Oscar Cahalane, David Joseph, John Nolan, Daniel Cahalane, Justin Oke, Liam Scriven, Kuba Hofft, Alex Kidney, Calvin Fitzgerald.
Subs: Lorcan Walsh, Daragh Hannigan, Ronan McCrave, Jack Barrett, Mark O’Connor, Seán Ahern (for Kuba Hofft), Oisín Lynch.
Scorers for Carrigtwohill: Alex Kidney 0-03 (2 fs), Justin Óke 0-02 (2 fs), David Joseph 0-01, John Nolan 0-01.
Referee: Michael O’Mahony