A TOP CLASS performance from Sean Moran helped the James Stephens under-16 hurlers relieve city rivals Dicksboro of their Roinn A league title. Full-forward Moran was the main man, bagging five goals as the Village recorded a big win in the final.
Played in Clara, Matthew McWey opened the scoring with a point for the Larchfield side before Moran struck for the first of his five goals two minutes later. Niall Mullins increased the Stephens lead with a pointed free as they exerted early pressure on their city neighbours.
However, they weren’t getting it all their own way. When Dicksboro full-forward Kevin Kenny struck for a good goal the Palmerstown side were right back in the game. Stephens got back on track, as a point from Niall Mullen extended their lead to three points.
Kevin Kenny reduced the arrears again with a point as both sides fought hard to gain the upper hand, but by the 28th minute Stephens had again extended their lead when Sean Moran hit his second goal. Pat Cahill finished the first half scoring with a point for Dicksboro, a score which saw them trail by five at the interval (2-6 to 1-4).
Dean Cornally extended the Stephens’ lead to six points early in the second half. From then on they took complete control, helped along by the on-fire Moran who scored three more goals for the Village. Although Dicksboro fought back, recording goals through Shane O’Brien and Pat Cahill late on, it was never going to be their day as Moran’s goals proved to be decisive.
James Stephens - Gavin Costigan, Ben Healy, Tom Cuddihy, Dylan Drennan, Cormac Cornally, James Tyrrell, Luke Scanlon, Niall Mullins (0-5, 0-3 frees), Ricci Drennan, Tadgh O’Dwyer (0-1), Matthew McWey (0-1), Dean Cornally (0-1), Cian Morton (1-1), Sean Moran (5-0), Ray Lahart (0-1, free).
Dicksboro - Darren Holohan, Mark Slater, Evan Cody, Thomas Carroll, Cory Cahill, Stephen Farrell, Dylan Scott, Shane O’Brien (1-1), Mark Cudmore, Aidan Walsh, Robert Fitzpatrick, Michael Phelan, James Byrne, Kevin Kenny (1-1), Paddy Cahill (1-3, 0-1 free). Subs: Ronan Butler, Jason Carroll.
Referee - Eoin Hayes (Thomastown).