Ballyboden St Enda’s (Dublin) 2-25
Clonkill (Wesmeath) 2-19 AET
Ballyboden St Enda’s are through to the semi-finals of the Leinster club senior hurling championship after seeing off a heroic effort from grief-stricken Clonkill tonight at Parnell Park.
Still reeling from the death of Annabel Loughlin, the three-year-old daughter of former Westmeath hurler and Clonkill clubman Enda, who passed away after a tragic accident last week and was buried earlier today, Clonkill took to the pitch tonight and somehow managed to put forth a display in the capital which will have made their club and county undoubtedly proud.
The Westmeath champions had started a highly emotional provincial quarter-final in superb fashion by pucking over points via marksman Brendan Murtagh that saw them lead by 0-6 to 0-2 after 11 minutes.
Paul Ryan (3), Aidan Mettle and Niall Ryan came up with the accurate responses for the home side to take the lead eight minutes before the break and it took the latter’s goal to carry in a 1-9 to 0-10 advantage at the halfway stage after Clonkill had found their rhythm again.
Ballyboden St. Enda's Simon Lambert and Eoin Price of Clonkill
Points from Conal Keaney and Paul Ryan after the restart looked to have provided the Dublin champions with some distance but the visitors simply weren’t going away, as they goaled in the 42nd minute via Luke Loughlin and kept the gap at one until Keaney won a free for Paul Ryan to send over and leave it at 1-16 to 1-14 with three minutes of regulation left.
Kevin O’Brien’s charges dug their deepest in the late stages to force extra time, as it finished 1-17 apiece, and looked like hitting the front in the best possible fashion early in the first period when they were awarded a penalty but Murtagh flashed the sliotar the wrong side of the post.
Clonkill’s full-forward would steer them ahead come the 64th minute with a free but it would be the last time the Lake men would see the lead as Paul Doherty and Paul Ryan (50) shot ‘Boden back into the ascendency and the scoreboard read 1-20 to 1-18 at the short break.
Top-scorer Ryan and Stephen O’Connor widened the margin out to six for the capital lads prior to Clonkill having their second goal from Niall Mitchell immediately cancelled out by Doherty, which was enough for Ballyboden to set-up a semi-final date with Coolderry of Offaly at the same venue next Sunday week.
Ballyboden St Enda's - C O’Donoghue; D Curran, L Corcoran, J Madden; S Durkin, S Lambert, D O’Connor; S O’Connor (0-1), F McGarry; C Keaney (0-2), C Dooley, N Ryan (1-1); A Mellett (0-2), C McCormack, P Ryan (0-15, 12f, 3'65). Subs: C Basquel for C McCormack, P Doherty (1-2) for C Dooley, N McMorrow (0-1) for F McGarry, J Roche (0-1) for N Ryan, N Ryan for C Basquel, C O’Neill for S O’Connor, M Travers for S Lambert.
Clonkill - A Mitchell; D Egerton, J Kenny, M McGrath; A McGrath, P Dowdall, L Folan; S Power, C Austin; L Loughlin (1-2), M Keegan (0-1), A Dowdall; A Price (0-1), E Price (0-4), B Murtagh (0-11, 7f). Subs: N Mitchell (1-0) for L Folan, J Smyth for A Dowdall, A Dowdall for A Price, J O’Brien for M McGrath, J Fagan for S Power.
Referee - D Hughes.