Shamrocks through thanks to first win
SHAMROCKS SEALED a spot in the last eight of The Courtyard Ferns Intermediate hurling championship after two second-half goals saw them topple Askamore in the final round in Group B in Farmleigh on Sunday.
After failing to secure a win in their four previous outings, it was a real do-or-die affair for the Enniscorthy side as another loss would have put them into a relegation final.
But, with a sterling second-half performance, they completely turned their year around and amazingly go through the quarter-finals with a mere two points on the board.
The loss puts an end to Askamore’s year, with the only silver lining being that they avoid the relegation battle.
The opening half was a lively, albeit low-scoring, affair, with both sides tearing into proceedings right from the start.
Scores were traded evenly throughout the half, with Harry Goff and Pa Weafer on form for Shamrocks and Askamore’s James Byrne deadly from placed balls.
Shamrocks were unlucky not to have a goal midway through the half when Goff hit the post, and moments later Jack Moorehouse’s effort was well saved by Darragh Kinsella.
The save allowed Askamore to regain composure and they finished out the half strongly with Byrne, Conor Levingstone and P.J. Nolan putting them two ahead at the break.
With the wind now at their backs, Shamrocks came flying out into the second-half, and four minutes after the resumption they were a point in front thanks to Pa Weafer, Maurice Casey and Jack Moorehouse.
Askamore answered well however, and with Tommy Devereux steadying things at the back they turned that deficit into a three-point lead midway through the half, with Gavin Sunderland and P.J. and Billy Nolan on song.
But, Shamrocks just wouldn’t lie down, and when Maurice Casey set Pa Weafer up excellently for a goal, they were right back in it.
This gave them the inspiration they needed to push on and, with great work from Brandon O’Connor, Seán Wildes and Maurice Casey, they finished out the half strongly to book a quarter-final meeting with Cloughbawn.
Shamrocks: Jamie Dagg; Barry Dobbs, John O’Connor, George Jacob; Anthony Wallace, Podge Doyle (0-1), Emmet Quirke; Bob Jacob, Philip Freeman; Brandon O’Connor (0-1), Seán Wildes (0-4, 1 line ball), Harry Goff (0-2); Maurice Casey (0-2), Jack Moorehouse (0-1), Pa Weafer (1-5, 0-5 frees). Subs. - Lar McDonald for Quirke (56), Jim Jacob for Goff (58).
Askamore: Darragh Kinsella; Tom Byrne, Frank Lancaster, James Lancaster; Conor Levingstone (0-2), Tommy Devereux, Colm Buttle; Seán Kirwan, Shane Tomkins; P.J. Nolan (0-2), Garry Doran, Podge Byrne (0-1); James Byrne (0-9, 7 frees), Edmond Kenny, Gavin Sunderland (0-3). Subs. - Billy Nolan (0-1) for Kenny (35), Peter O’Neill for Kirwan.
Referee: John Carton (Monageer-Boolavogue).