St Patrick’s Maghera 1-10 St Killian’s Garron Tower 1-8
Two injury-time points denied St Killian’s a third successive Danske Bank Foresters’ Cup and kept St Patrick’s Maghera on course to complete a clean sweep of Colleges’ hurling titles with this age-group.
While Maghera held the upperhand for most of the game, a fantastic equalising point from Harry Kilgore in the 59th minute threatened to upset the form book.
But Maghera substitute Pauric McNicholl won a break and fed Seamus Higgins who pointed with Brian Cassidy sealing the win with a late free.
Cassidy was not as influential as he had been in last week’s semi-final against Cross & Passion, well-shackled by Liam Gillan. But he did contribute 1-8 of his side’s total mostly from frees.
Both defences excelled and very little ball was one cleanly, as evidence by the scoring with Maghera managing only four scores from open play – but three more than their opponents.
Four Cassidy points in the first quarter and another from Conor Kelly put Maghera into a 0-5 to 0-1 lead.
However Dylan McLaughlin pointed two frees for St Killian’s to bring them closer at half-time, 0-6 to 0-3 down.
McLaughlin fired over three frees within six minutes on the re-start to tie the game, and, with Cassidy faltering at the other end, the game was very much in the balance.
That changed 10 minutes from time with Liam Cassidy gaining possession 20 metres out. He found his namesake Brian for a goal and a four points lead, a significant gap at that stage.
But three minutes later St Killian’s were handed a life-line when a long-range free from Dylan McLaughlin sailed all the way to the net, and with Kilgore driving over the equaliser, the momentum suddenly seemed to have swung in favour of the East Antrim school.
However Maghera stepped up to the mark again and snatched a late victory.
Nevertheless full credit to St Killian’s, who gave us something to shout about this year, especially after that fantastic semi-final win over St Mary’s. The three-in-a-row dream only died in injury-time
St Patrick’s : S Ó Caiside, A Toner, P Turner, F O’Kane, D McPeake, S McGuigan, R McCartney, S Higgins 0-1, S Downey, C Kelly 0-1, C McAllister, S Brunton, B Cassidy 1-8, 0-7 frees, L Cassidy, J McCloskey.
Subs – P McNicholl for Kelly; C McGuigan for Brunton.
St Killian’s : P Abram, S Magill, L Gillan, S Walsh, C McAteer, F McCambridge, C McDonnell, C Beggs, B O’Boyle, H Kilgore 0-1, S McMullan, D McLaughlin 1-7 frees, S O’Connor, D Haughey, D Black
Referee – Tomas McGilligan (Dunloy)