Whoops of relief sound as Our Lady's stay up
Whoops of relief rang out around Hollymount after a storming second half performance secured continuing Intermediate A hurling status for Lady's Island.
Our Lady's Island 1-14 Buffer's Alley 0-15
The men from the south coast looked doomed to relegation when Buffer's Alley led by six points at half time at the sunny and breezy Castlebridge venue.
But the advantage slipped away from Monamolin's second string after the break and they were a convincingly beaten side by the end of the hour.
Such a discouraging outcome looked unlikely throughout the first half as the forwards won their frees and the Alley had a placed ball specialist on hand to take advantage.
'Attaboy, Dempsey' was the cry from their supporters as Owen Dempsey knocked over yet another point with impressive ease.
Six frees and a '65' flowed from his hurl during this spell of dominance, with goalie Darren O'Brien joining in when he landed a huge hit from a free deep in his own half.
Lady's Island struggled to break the trend, though Jack Pettitt rattled off a run of three points and Darragh Sinnott popped up in the square to tip home a goal which proved vital.
As they mulled over a scoreline which read 0-13 to 1-4 in favour of their opponents, the prospect of taking the drop was a very real possibility over the half time oranges. It was wing forward Dean Maloney, all bustle and heart, who thumped over the first score after the resumption to signal that the fightback was underway.
The Island defenders cut down the fouls and Dempsey showed that he was human, chalking up a couple of wides from frees.
He did not add to his personal tally until a quarter hour into the half and it appeared that his side had no one else capable of taking a score.
While they laboured in attack, at the other end of the pitch Liam Kinsella, John Walsh and Dylan Murphy were eating into their increasingly fragile advantage.
On 49 minutes Darragh Sinnott hauled the slow starters level and then Quinn Saunders finally put them ahead a few seconds later.
The Alley huffed and puffed with every show of desire but their scoring touch had evaporated completely as they posted just a couple of points in an otherwise barren second half.
They were fortunate that both Dylan Murphy and John Walsh squirted goal opportunities wide of Darren O'Brien's net before the game ended with the Island ahead 1-14 to 0-15.
Lady's Island: Noel Dempsey; Cathal Devereux, Eamon Maloney, Davy Corish; Robbie Reville, Fintan Mullins, Quinn Saunders (0-1); Liam Kinsella (0-1), Colm Kinsella; Eoin Kinsella, Nicky Keane (0-1), Dean Maloney (0-2); Darragh Sinnott (1-1), Jack Pettitt (0-4, 1 free), John Power (0-3, 2 frees). Sub: Dylan Murphy (0-1) for E Kinsella 30 minutes.
Buffer's Alley: Darren O'Brien (0-1 free); John Furlong, Thomas Dempsey, Alan Doyle; Domhnall McCardle, Ciaran Murphy (0-1), Colm Óg Doran; Gearóid O'Connor, Aaron Redmond (0-1); James Foley, Cormac Foley (0-2), Michael Sinnott (0-1); Owen Dempsey (0-8, 7 frees, a 65), Keith Burke (0-1), John Moran. Subs: Darragh Butler for Moran 51 minutes; Danny Howell for Sinnott 54 minutes; Eoin Whelan for Redmond 57 minutes.
Referee: James Mullally