Martin's make it to Minor semi-finals
Taghmon depart after clearcut loss
St. Martin's booked their place in the last four of the Wexford People Coiste na nOg Minor hurling Premier championship with a classy showing against Taghmon-Camross in Piercestown on Wednesday.
St. Martin's 3-15 Taghmon-Camross 1-6
The hosts led the way in the group before a ball was thrown-in but knew a loss could see them eliminated from the championship. However, their performance was that of a team loaded with confidence and they secured top spot and a semi-final against Rathnure with the minimum of fuss.
Taghmon-Camross also had their hopes in their own hands but facing off against a St. Martin's side in this kind of form was always going to be a tough proposition. In the end it was a step too far for a talented group of players and, even more painfully, with other results going against them they slipped out of the championship altogether.
A lot of the damage was done in the first quarter as St. Martin's took full advantage of a brisk tail-wind. Luke Sinnott and Joe O'Connor traded points in the first two minutes but the home side reeled off the next 1-7 without reply.
Darren Codd claimed the goal with an inch-perfect shot low inside Jack Dunne's left post, while Rory O'Connor and Conor Firman added their names to the list of scorers.
Trailing by 1-8 to 0-1 at the start of the second quarter, things already looked bleak for the New Ross District side. They did manage further scores from Sinnott and Stephen O'Gorman before the interval but a second Martin's goal, from the stick of the dangerous Joe O'Connor, all but ended the game as a contest (2-9 to 0-3 at half-time).
The second period proved to be a tetchy affair and those indiscretions halted the scoring rate. Kyle Firman pulled home his side's third goal while Michael Codd and Conor Coleman also picked off points as their side eased 3-13 to 0-5 ahead.
Taghmon-Camross, to their credit, never gave up and got a semblance of consolation when, moments after Adam Winters pointed, O'Gorman pulled a deflected goal back. However, it wasn't enough to stop a determined St. Martin's from booking their semi-final spot opposite Rathnure.
St. Martin's: Calum Quirke; Pádraig Rossiter, Johnny Hamilton, Martin Whelan; Darragh Rossiter, Aaron Maddock, Maurice Walsh; Barry O'Connor (0-1), Conor Firman (0-5, 4 frees); Darren Codd (capt., 1-1), Joe O'Connor (1-2), Nicky Greene; Kyle Firman (1-1), Rory O'Connor (0-3), Conor Coleman (0-1). Subs. - Michael Codd (0-1) for Greene (31), Darragh Kenny for J. O'Connor (55), Jack Devereux for Coleman (56), Eoin O'Leary for P. Rossiter (56), Stephen Doyle for C. Firman (58), also Cian Kelly, Peter Barry, Philip Dempsey, Dylan Byrne, Ben Maddock, Adam Cantwell, Ciarán Dunne, Cian Ryan.
Taghmon-Camross: Jack Dunne; Stephen O'Gorman (Camross), Adam Winters (0-1), David O'Keeffe; Barry Og McGrath, Ian Carty, Eoin Banville; Stephen Stafford (capt., 0-1 free), Eoin McLoughlin; Stuart Murphy, Stephen O'Keeffe, Luke Sinnott (0-3 frees); Anto Roche, Stephen O'Gorman (1-1), Johnny Murphy. Subs. - Shane Lacey for McLoughlin (31), Darren Hayden for Roche (31), Anthony Cody for S. Murphy (41), Danny Winters for Sinnott (46), Anthony Doyle for J. Murphy (51).
Referee: James Flood (St. Mary's, Maudlintown).