Combination has edge
A spirited Marshalstown/Davidstown outfit sealed their passage through to the next round with a one-point victory over a battling Shamrocks outfit in this Enniscorthy District Under-21 hurling Roinn 1 championship game at Farmleigh on Monday of last week.
Na Fianna 2-13 Shamrocks 1-15
It was a glorious evening for hurling on a splendid sod, and both teams responded with passages of excellent play.
As the game developed it turned into a real dogfight with the sides continuing to exchange scores, but in the end the combined forces of Marshalstown-Castledockrell and Davidstown-Courtnacuddy held the Shamrocks surge for the narrowest of victories.
By the tenth minute Shamrocks led by 1-2 to 0-3, the goal coming after just two minutes when full-forward Robbie Cleary powered home a low shot from 14 metres, giving 'keeper Darragh Kehoe little chance.
But with Colm Quigley striking over some neat points for the home side, they were back level (1-3 to 0-6) after 17 minutes. Both sides could take lots of positives from their play, with a Mark Brennan goal two minutes before the break helping the eventual winners into a 1-8 to 1-7 interval lead.
Within one minute of the re-start Brian Ormonde increased his side's lead with a goal from close range, having reacted quickest to a breaking ball.
Still four points separated the sides at the end of the third quarter (2-11 to 1-10) but two quick-fire Podge Doyle pointed frees reduced the deficit to two with ten minutes remaining.
Two Colm Quigley pointed frees restored his side's four-point cushion with five minutes remaining, but once Podge Doyle responded with three pointed frees, the minimum separated the sides with one minute remaining.
However, the home defence held firm in the closing minutes.
Na Fianna: Darragh Kehoe; Peadar Roche, Jack Quigley, David Brennan; James O'Leary, Mark Kehoe (0-1 free), Daniel Delaney; Adam Harte, Mark Kehoe; Brian Ormonde (1-0), Bill Harrington, Mark Brennan (1-1); Barry Doyle (0-1), Colm Quigley (0-10, 6 frees, 1 '65), Alan Hickey.
Shamrocks: Killian Gahan; Rhys Dunne, Conor Kelly, Graham Nolan; Ricky Murphy, Brandon O'Connor, Aaron O'Toole; Shane O'Connor, Cory Breen; Kyle Foley, Podge Doyle (0-11, 8 frees, 1 '65), Andy Kelly (0-1); Luke Connors (0-1), Robbie Cleary (1-0), Seán O'Sullivan (0-1). Subs. - Ricky O'Leary for Nolan, Terry Connors (0-1) for L. Connors, Cormac Kehoe for Foley.
Referee: John Carton (Monageer-Boolavogue).