An epic first round of the TUS Munster Post Primary Schools U17 B Hurling Championship was played between The Abbey School and Cashel Community School in Seán Treacy Park on Tuesday 3rd October.
The Abbey School, Tipperary Town 1-18 Cashel Community School 1-18 (AET)
The Abbey School won 6-5 on penalties after extra time.
Human endeavour, resolve, faith and mental resilience were all demanded in boundless qualities to come through this contest, and ultimately the Tipperary Town students dug deep, and then deeper still, to find their way through against a Cashel Community school that deserved so much more than agonising heartbreak for the performance they produced. The game was played in a very sporting and honest manner which was a fitting tribute to Cashel GAA stalwart Timmy Moloney whose funeral took place earlier that day.
The first half began at a thundering pace with both sides not holding back in what was a classic derby game between the two West Tipperary schools. The Abbey School started the brighter and led 0-2 to 0-1 in the opening ten minutes. Key battles began to play out all over the field. In the 15th minute The Abbey secured the first goal of the game through a run and well taken goal by Darragh O’Hora. The opening 15 minutes of the game saw The Abbey establish their dominance. A brilliant save by Jamie Moloney in the Cashel goal kept The Abbey at bay. However much to Cashel Community School’s credit they responded well and they hit their purple patch in the last 15 mins of the first half. Using the wind to their advantage they took some crucial scores through centre forward Briain O’Donoghue and a well taken goal from wing forward Andrew Breen. It was Cashel Community School who finished much the stronger in the first half to lead 1-7 to 1-3 at half time.
The second half wasn’t short of the intensity and ferocity of the first half with some excellent scores and passages of play from both sides. Some well taken scores from Cashel Community School marquee forward Briain O’Donoghue helped to establish a four-point lead heading into the final ten minutes. It looked very much at this stage that Cashel Community School were in the ascendancy. However, The Abbey School dug deep and clawed their way back into the game through some well taken frees from midfielder Darragh O’Hora and a vital score from play from full forward Ciarán Kelly. In injury time and trailing by one point The Abbey won a hard earned free inside the 21 yard line which resulted in a converted score from Darragh O’Hora to send the game to extra time on a scoreline of 1-13 each.
The game headed to extra time with both teams at this stage out on their feet after 60 minutes of frantic hurling. However, the quality of hurling never dropped. In the first half of extra time the Cashel Community School half back line took control of the game. Cashel picked off four well taken points to The Abbey’s one point in the opening half to establish a three point lead at half time in extra time – 1-17 to 1-14.
The Abbey were facing an uphill battle going into the second half of extra time and had it all to do to remain in the competition. The introduction of both Eoin O’Connell and Donnacha Quigley led to two crucial points to reduce the margin to one point going into the closing minutes. With time almost up The Abbey forced a free in through the hard work of Eoin O’Connell. It was left to Darragh O’Hora to point the resulting free from an acute angle on the 21 yard line to draw the game on a scoreline of 1-18 to 1-18.
And so, a fantastic game of sheer heart, determination and grit was given the ultimate crown of thorns; a penalty shootout. Step forward Patrick O’Connor, who produced a fantastic save with penalties level at 5-5, while Donnacha Quigley, Ciarán Kelly, David Ryan, Adam Ryan and Darragh O’Hora all made the twine dance, ushering in incredible scenes of elation, devastation, celebration, and pain.
In what was a cruel way to lose a game, credit must go to both teams who produced 80 minutes of a hugely contested hurling game as well as a nail-biting penalty shootout. The Abbey now advance to a quarter final tie in two weeks time against Coachford College.
The Abbey School:
1.Patrick O’Connor (Cappawhite) 2. Jaye Cilvinas (Arravale Rovers), 3.Alan Delaney (Arravale Rovers), 4. Eoghan Ryan (Cappawhite); 5.Séan Cleary (Kickhams), 6.Adam Ryan (Arravale Rovers), 7. Tom Bradshaw (Lattin-Cullen), 8. David Ryan (Arravale Rovers; 0-2), 9.Darragh O’Hora (Solohead; 1-10 9f), 10. Cathal O’Mara (Kickhams); 11. Cathal Martin (Cappawhite; 0-1), 12. Ciarán Downey (Cappawhite; 0-1), 13. Eoin O’Connell (Lattin-Cullen; 0-2), 14. Ciarán Kelly (Arravale Rovers; 0-1) 15. Donnacha Quigley (Arravale Rovers; 0-1)
Subs: Conor McCarthy (Cappawhite) for Donnacha Quigley (35 mins), Jack Ryan (Cappawhite) for Eoin O’Connell (45 mins), Darragh Bresnan (Arravale Rovers) for Eoghan Ryan (AET), Donnacha Quigley (Arravale Rovers) for Cathal O’Mara (AET), Eoin O’Connell for Ciarán Downey (AET)
Cashel Community School:
1.Jamie Moloney (Golden) 2. Senan Mackey (Kickhams) 3. Noah O’Flynn (Fethard) 4. Niall Tobin (Rockwell/Rosegreen) 5. Brian Gleeson (Boherlahan) 6. Rory O’Mahony (Fethard) 7. Seán White (Golden) 8. Charlie Walsh (Fethard) 9. Shane Cooney (Clerihan; 0-1) 10. Charlie Hall (Golden; 0-1) 11. Briain O’Donoghue (Cashel; 0-14 8f) 12. Andrew Breen (Boherlahan; 1-0) 13. Rian O’Sullivan (Clerihan) 14. Tudor Mereacre (Cashel; 0-1) 15. Callum Butler (Cashel)
Subs: Aaron Twomey (Kickhams) Conor Fogarty (Boherlahan) Harry Fogarty (Golden; 0-1)