St Peter's get outclassed
Kilkenny CBS 0-16 St Peter's College 0-7
The final scoreboard was a fair reflection of the gulf in class witnessed at a bone-chillingly cold Ferns Centre of Excellence on Wednesday afternoon, when Kilkenny CBS eased to a 0-16 to 0-7 victory over St. Peter's College in round one of the Top Oil Leinster Post-Primary Schools Senior hurling Corn Ui Dhuill championship.
There are two particular stats on the Wexford school's rap-sheet that go about explaining the troubles they faced on the day- the victors' sharpshooter Conor Dreenan scored the same total from frees alone as St. Peter's managed collectively over the entire game, while St. Peter's also struck more wides (8) than points.
All told, it means a continuation of the dominance that Kilkenny have enjoyed over their neighbouring counterparts in this competition over the last few years, with a changing of the guard not immediately evident on the horizon.
Hard-working corner-forward Sean Boyd signalled Kilkenny's intentions with a neat opening point from the sideline after only 24 seconds, while Drennan knocked over a brace of frees to extend the gap to 0-3 to nil by the third minute.
Conall Clancy and Jack Devereux combined for the latter to smack over a response for St. Peter's, and although Clancy picked off a point of his own just shy of the sixth minute mark, they found themselves 0-6 to 0-2 in arrears thanks in part to an excellent point from an acute angle by Drennan.
Recent county Minor Ross Banville reduced the deficit from a free, but they didn't score again in the remainder of the half as instead Kilkenny CBS systematically broke them down.
Boyd assisted Drennan for his second score from play, and Drennan also knocked over a free that could easily have been a penalty following a robust challenge on Boyd.
St. Peter's had a genuine penalty shout of their own before that when David McCormack took down Conal O Crualoich after the Faythe Harriers youngster pounced on a mistake, but experienced referee Pat Moran waved away their claims.
Meanwhile, Drennan strode clear to open up a comfortable-looking 0-11 to 0-3 lead at half-time for the Marble City school, although they would experience a 10-minute dry spell when play resumed.
They weren't helped though by the game descending into trench warfare as St. Peter's seemed intent on upping the physical stakes without ever hurting the leaders with their hurling.
What followed was a stop-start, foul-ridden second half that did little to warm the sizeable crowd braving the wintry conditions.
A rare moment of excellence after the break saw Ban Maddock fly over a contender for score of the game from his centre-back berth at the end of the third quarter, but the game was already beyond his side by that stage to make any discernible difference.
Indeed, Dreenan accounted for four of CBS's five second-half points as they advanced to the next round without ever really been truly tested.
Kilkenny CBS: David McCormack; Mikey Byrne, Barry Lawlor, Mikey Butler; Luke Hogan, Liam Stynes, Cillian Timmons; Oísin Murphy, Joe Sheehan; Conor Heary, Conor Drennan (0-12, seven frees), Sean Kenny; Shane Staunton, Tadhg Butler (0-1), Sean Boyd (0-3). Sub: Jason Devereux (58) for Kenny.
St. Peter's College: Wexford: David Pettit (Our Lady's Island); Jake Nobbs (Blackwater), Dylan Lyne (Glynn-Barntown), Sam Audsley (St.Martin's); Cillian Gahan (Faythe Harriers), Ben Maddock (St.Martin's, 0-1), Philip Dempsey (St.Martin's); Michael Codd (St.Martin's, 0-1), Jack Devereux (St.Martin's, 0-1); Patrick O'Connor (Blackwater), Conall Clancy (Faythe Harriers, 0-1), Conal O'Crualoich (Faythe Harriers); Ross Banville (Shelmaliers, 0-2 frees), Cian Meyler (Our Lady's Island), Adam Cantwell (St.Martin's, 0-1). Subs: Ryan Furlong (Faythe Harriers) for Audsley (20), Brian Deeny (Faythe Harriers) for O'Crualoich (45).
Referee: Pat Moran (Laois)