Impressive Thurles CBS outfit crowned Munster under-15A hurling champions
Report by Brian McDonnell for the Tipperary Star newspaper
An impressive Thurles CBS outfit were crowned Munster post-primary schools under-15A hurling champions at the Clonmel Sportsfield on Wednesday afternoon. Thurles CBS survived a slight wobble either side of the half-time interval before scoring 1-6 without reply during the concluding thirty-one minutes of this contest against De La Salle.
Munster Post Primary Schools
Under-15 A Hurling Championship Final
Thurles CBS 2-11 De La Salle, Waterford 1-6
James Griffin, Luke Shanahan, Robert Doyle, Jack Leamy, Stephen Ferncombe and the lively Liam McCormack caught the eye for Thurles CBS, but the outstanding takeaway from this encounter was the solid hurling habits formed in this Tipperary outfit.
Thurles CBS used the hand pass and stick pass to work their way out of trouble, played quality ball forward when possible, supported one another and worked hard, especially up front. Indeed, the game-clinching goal, which materialised in the 54th minute, illustrated all that was best about this Thurles CBS team.
The Thurles CBS management team will be frustrated to learn that their side fired thirteen wides and dropped a further eight shots short, but they will be thrilled to note the response of their inside forwards when De La Salle ‘keeper Dáire Treacy gathered possession – each time the inside line tackled hard and won a handful of notable turnovers. And, none was more significant than in the 54th minute. De La Salle were still within striking distance of Thurles CBS when Pádraig Ryan and David Fogarty swallowed up Dáire Treacy, forced the turnover and there was Stephen Ferncombe to take full advantage and bury the game-clinching goal.
The clubs of Mid Tipperary should be thrilled with the hurling education that their players are being exposed to. The Thurles CBS management team was comprised of John Devane (Clonoulty-Rossmore), Martin Maher (Borris-Ileigh) and Niall Cahill (Emeralds).
Thurles CBS started terrifically well and led 0-5 to no-score with fourteen minutes on the clock. A point from David Fogarty set Thurles CBS on their way before Liam McCormack and Stephen Fercombe (two frees) added to their side’s tally. Finally, a terrific long-range effort from Jack Leamy left five between the sides.
A Patrick Fitzgerald free got De La Salle off the mark in the 16th minute, but Thurles CBS did not have it all their own way. Indeed, De La Salle conjured a goal-scoring opportunity of real note in the 15th minute, but Thurles CBS ‘keeper Jason O’Dwyer pulled off an extraordinary full-length save to deny the raiding Adam Croke. Seven minutes later, however, O’Dwyer was left helpless by Luke Horgan’s smart left-handed ground stroke and De La Salle were right back in it (0-5 to 1-1).
Almost immediately Thurles CBS struck for a goal of their own in response – the Tipperary outfit pieced together a terrific move in the 23rd minute; Luke Shanahan played a free down the right flank of the attack and found Liam McCormack who timed his run from inside to out perfectly. The Durlas Óg man then picked out Stephen Fercombe with a pin-point cross and the corner-forward buried his shot (1-5 to 1-1).
De La Salle’s Mark Fitzgerald emerged as a real force in this contest and prior to the break the Waterford lads fired over three points which arrived courtesy of Patrick Fitzgerald (two frees) and James Aylward.
Thurles CBS led 1-5 to 1-4 at the interval.
Another Mark Fitzgerald free tied the game in the opening minute of the second half and seconds later a Fitzgerald dummy fooled the Thurles CBS defence and the wing-forward fired De La Salle into a 1-6 to 1-5 lead.
Thurles CBS appeared to be wobbling a little, but they settled back down when Stephen Ferncombe converted a free in the 34th minute.
In the 40th minute Ferncombe enjoyed two terrific goal-scoring opportunities – Jack Leamy created the first and Robert Doyle the second, but, unfortunately, Ferncombe drilled one across the face of goal and wide and the other into the side netting.
With nineteen minutes to play a Stephen Ferncombe free edged Thurles CBS back into the lead before David Fogarty set up Darragh Stakelum for a cracking effort in the 43rd minute. Another Ferncombe free left three in it with twelve minutes to play (1-9 to 1-6).
The Thurles CBS management team will be frustrated to learn that their side fired thirteen wides and dropped a further eight shots short, but they will be thrilled to note the response of their inside forwards when De La Salle ‘keeper Dáire Treacy gathered possession – each time the inside line tackled hard and won a handful of notable turnovers. And, none was more significant than in the 54th minute. De La Salle were still within striking distance of Thurles CBS when Pádraig Ryan and David Fogarty swallowed up Dáire Treacy, forced the turnover and there was Stephen Ferncombe to take full advantage and bury the game-clinching goal (2-9 to 1-6).
Points from Edward Meagher and Mike Fitzpatrick brought this provincial final to an inevitable conclusion.
Afterwards, Ed Donnelly (Munster Council) presented the Corn Aodh Ui Dhudha to the Thurles CBS Captain Luke Shanahan.
Thurles CBS: Jason O’Dwyer (Clonoulty-Rossmore), Emmett Fogarty (Durlas Óg), James Griffin (Upperchurch-Drombane), Oisín Treacy (Upperchurch-Drombane), Robert Doyle (Clonoulty-Rossmore), Luke Shanahan (Upperchurch-Drombane, captain), Conor Horgan (Knockavilla Kickhams), Edward Meagher (Loughmore-Castleiney, 0-1), Darragh Stakelum (Durlas Óg, 0-1), Jack Leamy (Golden-Kilfeacle, 0-1), Alex Lawlor (Fenians), Pádraig Ryan (Upperchurch-Drombane), Liam McCormack (Durlas Óg, 0-1), David Fogarty (Holycross-Ballycahill), Stephen Ferncombe (Clonoulty-Rossmore (2-5, 0-5 frees). Subs: (43rd) Mike Fitzpatrick (Drom & Inch, 0-1) for Alex Lawlor, (62nd) Toby Lambe (Holycross-Ballycahill) for Conor Horgan, (62nd) Pádraig Treacy (Loughmore-Castleiney) for Pádraig Ryan. Remaining panel members: David Sherman (Galmoy), Joe Caesar (Holycross-Ballycahill), Killian Rafter (Durlas Óg), Jack O’Mara (Durlas Óg), Cathal Corcoran (Moycarkey-Borris), Philip Hayes (Durlas Ó), Seán Ryan (Upperchurch-Drombane), Daniel Ruddy (Durlas Óg), Stephen Mawe (Durlas Óg), Alex Crowley (Durlas Óg), Eoin Noonan (Upperchurch-Drombane), Conor Flynn (Durlas Óg), Conor Phelan (Roscrea), Conor Ruddy (Durlas Óg), Michael Connolly (Loughmore-Castleiney), Thomas Purcell (Upperchurch-Drombane), Joseph Ryan (Moycarkey-Borris), Max Fitzgibbon (Thurles Gaels) and Peter Aleshinloye (Durlas Óg).
De La Salle, Waterford: Dáire Treacy, David Roche, Páraic Murphy, Daniel Kiely, Seán O’Dwyer, Alex Keane, Cormac Cantwell, Mark Fitzgerald, Oran Hartney, Patrick Fitzgerald (0-5, 0-4 frees), James Aylward (0-1), Cormac Dawson, Adam Croke, Luke Horgan (1-0), Kealan Furlong
Sub: (53rd) Ross Delahunty for Kealan Furlong.
Referee: Mike Sexton (Limerick)