GO AHEAD DUBLIN ADULT HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION ONE ROUND-UP: MAY 24TH-25TH
GO AHEAD DUBLIN ADULT HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION ONE ROUND-UP: MAY 24-25
By Daire Walsh
Ballyboden St Enda’s preserved their 100% record in Division One of the Go Ahead Adult Hurling Leagues with a 5-19 to 2-14 victory against St Vincent’s at Pairc Ui Murchu on Tuesday evening.
Coming into this game with six consecutive wins under their belts, ‘Boden underlined their top-tier title credentials by producing another impressive display at both ends of the pitch. Vincent’s were the only other unbeaten team in AHL1 before this contest, but ultimately fell short to their southside counterparts.
Despite what the final scoreline may suggest, however, this certainly wasn’t a one-sided affair from start to finish. While former Tipperary hurler Timmy Hammersley broke the deadlock for ‘Boden with a well-executed point, Vins immediately replied through Rory Finn at the opposite end.
Hammersley duly posted his second score of the half, before Tom Connolly and Dara Perry registered unanswered efforts to squeeze the visitors in front. The lead changed hands on a number of occasions in the opening period, with ‘Boden regaining the ascendancy after Hammersley and Simon Lambert had split the uprights.
However, this latest ‘Boden cushion was short-lived as Perry, Sean Mulcahy and Stephen McGarry all found the target for a fired-up Vins. The hosts responded with their own scoring blitz courtesy of Paul Ryan (two) and Hammersley and even though Connolly and Alan Moore raised white flags for their opponents, a Hammersley goal seemingly had the Firhouse Road outfit in the driving seat approaching the break.
Yet Vincent’s proceeded to bag a three-pointer of their own and brought a slender advantage (1-11 to 1-10) into the interval as a result. This boosted the confidence levels of the Marino men, but ‘Boden came out all guns blazing at the beginning of the second half.
After ex-county stars Hammersley and Conal Keaney moved them back ahead – in advance of Ryan and Connolly claiming two-point salvos – David Curtin’s charges created substantial daylight between the teams. Ryan drilled a low free to the net in clinical fashion and followed up with his second major just a few minutes later.
Vins persevered with their challenge as the action progressed, but a Pearce Christie goal effectively placed the outcome beyond doubt. Davy Keogh did raise another green flag for ‘Boden in the closing stages and while Conor Burke – fresh from his appearance for Dublin against Galway in the Leinster Senior Hurling Championship three days earlier – did likewise for Vincent’s, it was a mere consolation in the end.
Although Lucan Sarsfields secured a 4-16 to 1-17 success over Faughs at 12th Lock on Wednesday, ‘Boden are still four points clear of them at the summit of the table. Vins are five points adrift in third, albeit with a game in hand on the two main pace-setters.
Elsewhere on Tuesday, county champions Kilmacud Crokes had five points to spare (1-22 to 0-20) against Craobh Chiarain at Clonshaugh. Following a run of three games without a win, this comes as a timely boost for the Stillorgan side.
2021 Dublin SHC finalists Na Fianna produced a strong display at Shanganagh Park, only to lose to home team Cuala by the slenderest of margins (3-12 to 1-17).
Meanwhile, Naomh Barrog made it three victories on the bounce when accounting for Whitehall Colmcille on a score of 2-18 to 0-13 in Kilbarrack.
At Marley Park on Wednesday, St Brigid’s emerged as emphatic 3-17 to 2-10 victors against Ballinteer St John’s. A Jack Ó Néill point edged the Russell Park men in front during the early exchanges and while Ballinteer subsequently moved in front themselves, the visiting side dominated the remainder of the opening half.
Even though Andrew Kavanagh, Johnny McGuirk and corner-back Cathal Doyle caught the eye with some fine scores, it was Adam McGuirk who really stood out. Thanks to a hat-trick of goals from the latter, Brigid’s brought a commanding 3-7 to 0-4 cushion into the break.
To their credit, Ballinteer didn’t allow their heads to drop and claimed a brace of goals in the second period. Nonetheless, St Brigid’s maintained a firm grip on the proceedings with Ruairi Convery, Eoin Dunne, Karl Rogers and Luke Purtill points ultimately sealing their fourth win from seven in this year’s league.