DUBLIN SEN ‘A’ HURL LEAGUE
Ardscoil Ris’ O’Leary stars as Fintan’s also win round-robin tie
ARDSCOIL Ris’ quest to reclaim the Dublin Senior ‘A’ Hurling Championship title began in convincing fashion at Collins Avenue last Friday.
Powered by a superb individual display from Shane O’Leary, Ardscoil recorded an eight-point victory (4-17 to 4-9) at the expense of St Aidan’s CBS in their opening game of the competition’s round robin series.
The Griffith Avenue outfit were most recently crowned county champions in November 2015, when John Walsh registered 1-4 in a final triumph over Colaiste Eanna at the DCU Sportsgrounds.
Colaiste Eoin subsequently secured back-to-back crowns, but will be absent for the forthcoming campaign – reducing the number of teams in the top-tier to five. Thanks to early points by O’Leary (two), Liam McGovern and David O’Sullivan, Ardscoil created early daylight against their northside neighbours.
With Andrew Gilroy (son of former Sky Blues dual manager Pat) excelling in defence, they continued to dominate the opening period.
A Mark Sweeney goal soon followed and even though the Aidan’s attack were beginning to grow in stature, their clinical opponents were 3-11 to 1-6 in front at the break.
The hosts responded on the resumption with a well-worked three-pointer, before the outstanding O’Leary rattled the back of the net for Ardscoil. There was plenty of life in the Aidan’s challenge, however, and they significantly reduced their deficit with a brace of fine goals.
Ardscoil’s Neil Currie also produced a stunning stop in the final-minute of the action, but the intricate combination play of O’Leary and McGovern had already guided Ardscoil towards a commanding success.
Meanwhile, St Fintan’s HS, Sutton kick-started their own campaign with a hard-earned win over Colaiste Eanna on the same day.