Roundup: Electric Ireland minor championship action in three provinces
ELECTRIC IRELAND MINOR HURLING AND FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP RESULTS
LEINSTER MINOR HURLING CHAMPIONSHIP
KILKENNY 3-23 OFFALY 1-16
WEXFORD 1-15 DUBLIN 1-12
LEINSTER MINOR "B" HURLING CHAMPIONSHIP (Peadar Ó Laitháin Cup)
ANTRIM 2-11 DOWN 0-14
ULSTER MINOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP
DONEGAL 4-22 ANTRIM 0-8
MUNSTER MINOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP
LIMERICK 2-9 TIPPERARY 1-9
CORK 5-28 WATERFORD 0-3
There was action in three provinces in the Electric Ireland minor football and hurling championships tonight, where Kilkenny and Dublin set up what will be the eighth meeting of these two counties in the final of the Leinster hurling championship in the last 15 seasons, while the footballers of Donegal, Cork and Limerick all got their seasons out to a good start with a first round win.
The action at UPMC Nowlan Park was a lot more closely-contested than the final score suggested, and it was only two stoppage time goals from Cillian Hackett and Harry Shine that pushed the margin out to double figures. Shine had an incredible night for Kilkenny, shooting 2-15 in total, including 1-7 from open play.
His penalty early in the second quarter helped Kilkenny into a 1-10 to 0-8 half-time lead, though already Offaly goalkeeper Kieran Coonan had been called upon to make some excellent saves. Adam Screeney fired in a goal for the Faithful County to cut the gap back to a point with 20 minutes to play, but gradually Kilkenny started to exert their dominance before really piling on the scores in stoppage time.
It was a tight affair right up to the end at Chadwicks Wexford Park, where Luke Roche’s tally of 0-9 (0-8f) helped Wexford to edge out Dublin by three points, 1-15 to 1-12. The sides were largely inseparable in the first half, when goals from Denis McSweeney of Dublin and Wexford’s Shane Roche saw them go in level at the break, 1-7 each.
Wexford gave themselves a little bit of daylight early in the second half with consecutive points from Luke Roche, Cian Doyle and Luke Murphy, and they kicked on to lead by five going into the closing stages, where two McSweeney scores left Dublin chasing a goal that never quite came.
Meanwhile in the Peadar Ó Liathain cup final, for the Leinster “B” championship, an early goal for Niall McGarel and another for full forward Jack McCloskey kept Antrim in the game at a time when Down were playing some of the better hurling, and while Callum O’Neill came off the bench to shoot four points for the Mourne county, white flags alone weren’t enough and it was Antrim who prevailed by 2-11 to 0-14.
Hot on the heels of the Cork minor hurlers recorded a 40-point victory over Clare, the minor football Rebels did the same to Waterford, as it finished 5-28 to 0-3 at Páirc Uí Chaoimh this evening. Jamie O’Driscoll shot the first two goals of his hat-trick in the first half when the home side built up a 2-18 to 0-0 lead, while Darragh O’Brien and Niall Daly also raised green flags.
Remarkably, just three players; Hugh O'Connor, Niall Kelly and Ross Corkery, son of Cork legend Colin, shot 0-24 between them.
Diarmuid O’Riordan got an early goal for Tipperary at the LIT Gaelic Grounds against Limerick, but once Marc Nolan replied in kind for the home side just before the water break, Limerick always held a lead of at least a couple of points in the other quarter-final. Just when it seemed like Tipp were rallying in the third quarter, Rúairí Cronin added a second Limerick goal and that gave them the cushion they needed to set up another derby contest in the semi-final, this time against Clare.
It was plain sailing for Donegal in Ulster as they posted a 4-22 to 0-8 win over Antrim at MacCumhaill Park set up a quarter-final clash with Monaghan in the first game of this year’s Ulster championship.
Paddy McElwee got the first of his two goals to put Donegal seven ahead at half-time, and he put himself in the right place to finish off the rebound early in the second after Antrim goalkeeper Pádraig Linton did well to save from Luke McGlynn. Kevin McCormick and Michael Callaghan added subsequent goals, with McCormack topping the scoring charts with 1-5, followed by McGlynn (0-6).