Carrigaline Suffer Semi-Final Defeat By Impressive Blarney
Updated: Sep 20
It was Semi-Final heart-break for Carrigaline tonight in the Co-Op Superstores PIHC. A hat-trick of goals from Padraig Power and an incredible all-round display from Mark Coleman saw Blarney win out comfortable winners. The North-Cork club now face Castlelyons in the decider after they beat Courcey Rovers earlier in the day.
Carrigaline came into the game with one change from their last win in the group stage over Youghal, with the injured Cian Barry making way for Kevin O'Reilly, making his first start in this year's Championship. Peter Ronayne and Tony Murphy returned from injury layoffs to make the bench for Carrigaline, who were looking to add to their recent run and reach the Premier Intermediate Hurling Championship final for the first time in their history.
An interesting side story leading up to the game was the clash between UCC teammates. Blarney's Mark Coleman, Shane Bennett and Padraig Power all lined up alongside Brian Kelleher, David Griffin, Éanna Desmond and Denis McBarron in last weekend's meeting between 'the college' and Na Piarsaigh.
It was Blarney who came out of the blocks fastest, with half-forward Declan Hanlon scoring the first point of the game after 12 seconds. That was just the beginning of a dominant early spell, in which the North-Club led 1-3 to 0-0 after just four minutes. Padraig Power was a constant thorn in the side of the Carrigaline defense and his UCC teammate, David Griffi. After scoring a fine point from play, Power found the back of the net after being assisted by Mark Coleman.
Despite the difficult start to the contest, Carrigaline battled through and opened their tally with a point from midfielder Éanna Desmond. That was the catalyst for more and Carrigaline quickly added two additional scores as Brian Kelleher stuck over two frees. Another point from play came through Kevin O'Reilly, who started the game in the forward line, reducing the deficit to three points on the stroke of the first half water break.
The scoring rate was low but the intensity was high and their was palpable tension in Pairc Uí Rinn, which welcomed back a small amount of supporters. Keith Costello pointed for Blarney in the 18th minute and moments later they nearly found another goal through Shane Barrett, but he was denied by a magnificent save by Mark O'Mahony in the Carrig goal.
Unfortunately it just did not click for Carrigaline in the opening period as they really struggled to find their forwards and gain any sort of momentum. Mark Coleman put over an enormous free from his own half and then with 27 minutes on the clock he found the back of the net after latching onto a loose ball just inside the 21 metre line. A free from Brian Kelleher and a point from David Drake in stoppage time reduced the margin between the teams, but Blarney were fully deserving of their 2-7 to 0-6 half-time lead.
Carrigaline were much sharper at the beginning of the second half, scoring three points on the bounce as Brian Kelleher scored a free and a point from play, while Éanna Desmond grabbed his second score of the day moments later.
However, Blarney responded well as they replied with points from Coleman and goalscorer Padraig Power. Brian Kelleher grabbed another free but the margin that his side had slowly but surely chipped away at began to grow once again. Shane Barrett turned on the style for Blarney as he scored all of his side's next four points.
Carrigaline could not find their rhythm and as the game entered the final quarter they found themselves out of the contest. The clinical moment came immediately after the second half water stoppage. Mark Coleman found space down the left-hand touchline, racing away from his marker he went on to find Power, a replica of the first half goal, and like then the forward made no mistake.
Blarney pulled further and further ahead as the game entered its final stages. Power completed his hat-trick with another goal, while Mark Coleman went on to rack up an incredible tally of points both from play and placed ball. A Rob O'Shea goal with just a couple of minutes remaining was only a consolation as Blarney ran out comfortable winners.
It was a difficult night for Carrigaline but the experience is sure to stand to a squad featuring many players who will be playing for the foreseeable future. It was an incredible achievement to qualify automatically for the semi-final and they can count themselves proud. Full time in Pairc Uí Rinn. 4-20 to 1-12.
Carrigaline Scores: B Kelleher 0-7 (0-6f), Rob O'Shea 1-0, Éanna Desmond 0-2, Kevin O'Reilly, David Drake and Ronan Kelleher 0-1 each.
Carrigaline Team: Mark O'Mahony; Chris Vaughan, David Griffin, David Stack; Kevin O'Reilly, Steven Williamson, Kevin Kavanagh; Wes O'Brien, Éanna Desmond; David Drake, Denis McBarron, Simon O'Brien; Brian Kelleher, Rob O'Shea and Ronan Kelleher.
Carrigaline Subs: Killian McIntyre for O'Brien (36), Peter Ronayne for Vaughan (42), Tony Murphy for R Kelleher (47), Elliot O'Keefe for McBarron (50) for Darragh King for Stack (56)