Taghmon's champagne showing
Taghmon-Camross 2-13 Buffers Alley 1-13
Taghmon-Camross produced four minutes of champagne hurling to win away to Buffers Alley at Monamolin at the start of the Greenstar Premier Under-21 championship on Tuesday.
Much of what was served up by the two sides on a sunny summer evening was flat beer until the eventual victors popped the cork with a fizzy run of 2-2.
The startling purple patch midway through the second-half propelled them into a lead which held to the end, with three points to spare.
The first-half of proceedings was dominated by the free-takers as forwards of both sides struggled to shake off their markers.
Luke Sinnott batted over seven frees to monopolise the Taghmon-Camross scoring up to half-time, while Owen Dempsey was four times on the mark from placed balls for the Alley.
The home side looked slightly the more inventive and threatening outfit during this period, with scores from play by John Farrell, Ross Donohoe and Jamie Doyle assisting them to their 0-9 to 0-7 interval lead.
The battle resumed with more of the same as Sinnott and Dempsey exchanged a point apiece from frees.
Then out of the blue, Taghmon-Camross turned on the style with Stephen O'Gorman leading the way as the side suddenly looked like world-beaters for a brief but glorious spell.
The full-forward lit the fuse with a run that had defenders turned inside out before he released Shane Lacey who made no mistake from close range - his goal the team's first score of the evening from play.
Within seconds, O'Gorman had slotted over a point and then Darragh Kehoe was picking the sliothar out of his net again, beaten by the number 14 after Darren Hayden created the opening with a solo from midfield.
For good measure, Lacey added another point before normal, not so brilliant, service was resumed, the mood broken by a leg injury to the influential Hayden.
From being ahead by two, the hosts were suddenly six in arrears though, with more than ten minutes left to play, retrieving the situation looked by no means impossible.
Some straight running from John Furlong, John Lee Meyler and Ross Donohoe caused alarms in the Taghmon-Camross defence but goalie Jack Dunne was beaten just the once, by a rocket of a free from Donohoe as the visitors held out for the win.
Taghmon-Camross will travel to face Naomh Eanna tonight (Tuesday) in the 'A' quarter-final, while Buffers Alley will meet Rapparees in the 'B' grade on a date to be decided.
Taghmon-Camross: Jack Dunne (0-1 free); Declan Carroll, David O'Keeffe, Tom Banville; Barry Óg McGrath, Adam Winters, Darren Hayden; Shane Doyle, Stephen Stafford; Anthony Roche, Shane Lacey (1-1), Luke Sinnott (0-9 frees); Stuart Murphy, Stephen O'Gorman (1-2), Anthony Doyle. Sub. - Adrian Doyle for Hayden (50).
Buffers Alley: Darragh Kehoe; Leonard Leacy, John Furlong (0-1), Barry Doyle; Gearóid O'Connor, Ross Donohoe (1-2, 1-1 frees), James Teale; Ciarán Murphy (0-1), Lee Murphy; Jamie Doyle (0-1), John Lee Meyler, Owen Dempsey (0-7, 6 frees, 1 '65); Darragh Hammel, Robbie Donnelly, Jack Butler. Sub. - John Furlong (0-1) for Donnelly (30).
Referee: Justin Heffernan (Blackwater).