Colaiste Mhuire cruise into final four

Col Mhuire Johnstown 2-20

Col Mhuire Johnstown 2-20

Colaiste Naomh Cormac 0-10

Colaiste Mhuire (Johnstown) booked their place in the Leinster Vocational Schools Roinn A hurling semi-finals with a comfortable victory over Offaly opponents Colaiste Naomh Cormac (Kilcormac).

The foundations for this success was established in the first half as the Johnstown team played against a gale-force wind and were a point ahead at the break.

The Kilkenny side started well, with Kevin Sweeney scoring the first three points from placed balls. Their Offaly opponents replied with two similar scores from their full-forward Dan Murray. Points from Brian Webster, James Kenny and Willie Brennan extended the lead approaching the mid-way point of the first half.

David O’ Gorman and Willie Brennan were beginning to dominate at midfield and were supported by an excellent half back line of Luke Hughes, Jason Stanley and Shane Quinlan. Four more points from Kevin Sweeney (two from frees) increased the lead but once again Kilcormac replied with scores from Murray (0-5, three frees), P. Troy and P. Howley that left the score at half-time 0-10 to 0-9 in favour of the Kilkenny team.

Johnstown started the second half on the attack. They made a decisive move in the game when the ball reached Niall O’Gorman, who rounded his man and scored an excellent goal. Further points from Willie Brennan, Shane Donnelly and Kevin Sweeney put seven points between the teams as Johnstown began to stretch out in front.

With the returning Thomas Moriarty having an outstanding game at full-back the Kilcormac outfit were struggling to reduce the deficit. The Offaly side didn’t help their cause by conceding a lot of frees, with Kevin Sweeney on hand to punish them each time.

With Colaiste Mhuire dominating in all positions, a second goal from Shane Donnelly finished the game as a contest, while points from James Kenny and Willie Brennan wrapped up a superb win.

Johnstown can now look forward to a Leinster semi-final against Carlow’s Borris VS in the New Year.

SCORERS: Colaiste Mhuire - K. Sweeney (0-12, 0-9 frees); W. Brennan (0-4, 0-1 free, 0-1 65); S. Donnelly (1-1); N. O’Gorman (1-0); J. Kenny (0-2); B. Webster (0-1). Colaiste Naomh Cormac - D. Murray (0-8, 0-5 frees); P. Troy, P. Howley (0-1 each).

Colaiste Mhuire - S. Moriarty, B. Webster, T. Moriarty, M. Drennan, L. Hughes, J. Stanley, S. Quinlan, W. Brennan, D. O’Gorman, B. Webster, K. Sweeney, F. Phelan, N. O’Gorman, J. Kenny, S. Donnelly. Subs: P. Duggan for B. Webster, 40 mins; J. Bergin for F. Phelan, 47 mins; E. Vaughan for B. Webster, 47 mins.

Colaiste Naomh Cormac - J. Kilmartin, B. Leonard, E. Grogan, J. Daly, J. Studdart, J. Quinn, K. Bracken, A. Spain, C. Mahon, P. Troy, D. Mahon, P. Howley, K. Ryan, D. Murray, O. Mahon. Subs: S. Lowry for J. Daly, 33 mins; K. Bagnell for K. Ryan, 36 mins; K. Ryan for K. Bracken, 47 mins; D. Bracken for B. Leonard, 51 mins.

Referee - Simon Whelehan.