McCarthy and Carrig end their long wait

 

Carrigtwohill 0-15 Cork IT 1-11:TWO WONDER points from Cork star Niall McCarthy helped Carrigtwohill end a 93-year wait for their second Cork hurling title after a terrific contest with first time finalists Cork IT in front of a crowd of over 10,000 at Páirc Uí Chaoimh yesterday.

McCarthy struck from close to the left touchline in front of the covered stand in quick succession to first restore parity at 0-11 to 1-8 after 43 minutes and then extend the lead to two after captain Michael Fitzgerald sandwiched in his sixth in between.

The accuracy of CIT skipper Lorcan McLoughlin managed to keep the students in touch; they drew level for the fourth time through his pointed free three minutes from the end.

The introduction of former Cork player, Seán O’Farrell, proved a master-stroke as the burly full-forward turned back the clock by scoring the winner a couple of minutes later.

Despite two minutes injury-time CIT were unable to grab an equaliser and force a replay. In the end their inexperience cost them a place in history, reflected in their wide tally of 14.

Treacherous underfoot conditions affected both sides, though CIT seemed more troubled and they were unable to get their running game moving, nine first-half wides underlining their main problem.

Carrigtwohill, who were in relegation trouble a few seasons back, looked the more likely side when leading by 0-8 to 1-3 at the interval.

Fitzgerald was proving a handful at full forward and Tomas Hogan’s free-taking kept the scoreboard ticking over.

Even Cathal Casey’s goal after 13 minutes, following a long ball in by McLoughlin, couldn’t settle the students, who continued to misfire, and half-time came at the right time from their perspective.

CIT’s most productive spell came in the 10 minutes following the break, when they scored four points without reply.

David Drake started the sequence via an upright and substitute Tony Murphy ended it from a free with Clare’s Pat O’Connor and McLoughlin also on target.

Carrig’s response to falling 1-8 to 0-9 adrift was swift and decisive, scoring four points of their own, including McCarthy’s memorable pair, which inspired his colleagues to a famous victory.

CARRIGTWOHILL: W McCarthy; M Foley, P O’Sullivan, R Power; C O’Connell, N Furlong, M O’Riordan; D O’Mahony, S Flannery; T Hogan (0-3, two rees, one ), N McCarthy (0-2), L OSullivan; R White (0-3), M Fitzgerald (0-6, two frees). Subs: S O’Farrell (0-1) for Kidney (47 mins), B Lordan for Hogan (58 mins).

CIT: (Cork unless started): K Roche; J O’Callaghan, E Dillon, B Withers; L McLoughlin (0-5, three frees, one 65), R Cashman, B O’Sullivan; M OSullivan (0-1), N Kelly; J Cronin (0-1), D Drake (0-1), A Walsh; T Quaid (Limerick) (0-1 free), S O’Brien, C Casey (1-0). Subs: P O’Connor (Clare) 0-1 for Kelly half-time, T Murphy (0-1, free) for Quaid (36 mins), J Sheehan for Drake 42 mins, K Hallissey for B O’Sullivan (53 mins).