Second-half surge proves decisive for Meath champions Summerhill
Newtown Blues’ provincial run ends at the quarter-final stage
Summerhill 2-13 Newtown Blues 1-13
Meath champions Summerhill set up a semi-final clash with Dublin counterparts St Vincent’s following this exciting quarter-final tussle in Drogheda.
A devastating burst immediately after half-time during which Summerhill registered 1-5 in an 11-minute spell proved decisive.
That propelled them into a 2-9 to 1-7 lead and they were always in the ascendancy after that, though the hosts managed to reduce the deficit to two points in the closing stages.
Full forward Brian Kermode took advantage of a mix up in the Summerhill defence and finished to the net to give the Blues an early lead. However the hosts were unable to build on that promising start and boosted by a goal from Adrian Kenny, Summerhill struck back to lead 1-4 to 1-2 after 20 minutes.
Summerhill, having their first outing of the campaign, were a different team on the restart and midfielder Michael Byrne accounted for three points while Sean Dalton and Barry Dardis also struck points to leave their side leading 1-9 to 1-7, by the 40th minute.
Then came the crucial second goal from Paul Rispin, leaving the Blues facing a real uphill battle.
The accuracy of Judge who took his tally to six points, kept the Blues in touch and the margin was down to two following a brace of quick-fire points from Hugh McGinn.
But ’Hill captain Brian Ennis increased the lead to three on 60 minutes and while the Blues went in search of a match-saving goal in added time, the Meath champions held out.
SUMMERHILL: T McDonnell; P Jennings, C Young, W Ryan; P Geraghty, A Lyons, S Husband; C Gillespie (0-1), M Byrne (0-3); D Larkin, B Ennis (0-5, 4 frees), A Kenny (1-0); P Rispin (1-1), S Dalton (0-2), B Dardis (0-1). Subs: R Hatton for Jennings (h/t), D Dalton for Husband (56 mins), K Ryan for Rispin (60 mins).
NEWTOWN BLUES: C Barton; A Tinley, T Costello, N Costello; S Moonan (0-1 free), E Judge, J Murray; K Lynch (0-1), J Kermode (0-1); B Sharkey, H McGinn (0-2), A McDonnell; C Judge (0-6, 4 frees), B Kermode (1-0), R Carr (0-2). Subs: D Moore for Murray (25 mins), C Branigan for E Judge (38 mins), D Kierans for J Kermode (52 mins).
Referee: Fergal Kelly (Longford)