ADULT HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION TWO ROUND-UP: MAY 18
By Daire Walsh
Faughs preserved their 100% start to the Adult Hurling League Division Two season with a commanding 0-23 to 1-10 triumph over Scoil Ui Chonaill at Tymon North on Saturday evening.
In the opening three rounds of the campaign, the Templeogue outfit set out their stall with a series of convincing wins. They maintained this trend at home to Scoil - who are still searching for their maiden league victory of the year.
Having suffered the heartbreak of relegation in 2018, they appear hell-bent on an automatic return to the top-flight. They are not the only unbeaten side in the division, though, as Thomas Davis currently occupy the runner-up spot with seven points from a possible eight.
They shared the spoils with Setanta in their previous league outing on March 24 (1-15 apiece), before returning to winning ways at Kiltipper Road last Saturday. Naomh Barrog proved to be tricky opponents for the Tallaght men, but they eventually prevailed with three points to spare (3-16 to 3-13).
Additionally, O’Toole’s also find themselves on a winning streak in the second-tier. Their opening round encounter with Naomh Olaf in February was postponed to a later date but once they got their term up and running, the northsiders established their promotion credentials.
Back-to-back triumphs over Naomh Fionnbarra and St Sylvester’s saw them shooting up the table and they held their nerve to get the better of Setanta at Blunden Drive this past weekend. Former Dublin hurler Peadar Carton bagged four points over the course of the hour and he was one of several to stand out for Joe Morris’ charges.
Conor Carton and Ryan Bergin registered six points apiece, while Andy Morris and Sean O’Keeffe both chipped in with 0-5 hauls. Daithi Concarr also added a brace of points for the hosts, helping towards an eventual 0-28 to 3-14 success.
Although St Oliver Plunkett’s/Eoghan Ruadh were defeated by Faughs on their first day out on February 24, it represents the lowest winning margin (3-12 to 3-7) the pace-setters have had thus far in the competition.
They have since had the measure of challenges posed by Erin’s Isle and Naomh Olaf, and once again reined supreme away to Naomh Fionnbarra in round four. While they ultimately emerged with a 12-point victory (3-19 to 1-13), it wasn't all plain sailing for Plunkett’s.
Despite goalkeeper Bill McCormack contributing a monster free, they found themselves on level terms at the break (0-7 each). Yet with Paddy Curran and Conor Scully hold firm in defence, they took firm control of the action on the restart.
They were certainly aided by the second half dismissal of a Naomh Fionnbarra player, but Oisin Boland’s introduction off the bench was also decisive. He grabbed a brace of goals to give Plunkett’s considerable daylight in the contest.
Cillian Hayes also amassed four points at The Bogies and this was supplemented by Tommy Hynes’ 0-3 tally. Plunkett’s third goal of the tie arrived courtesy of Kevin Whelan as they marched towards an emphatic success.
Meanwhile, Naomh Olaf opened their account for the season at Pairc Ui Bhriain - squeezing past the challenge of St Sylvester’s (3-16 to 3-14).
At St Anne’s Park, Erin’s Isle dug deep to earn a draw against Raheny. It had been a difficult start to the proceedings for the Finglas men, with Eoghan Smyth exerting a powerful influence for Raheny.
He finished with 1-8 to his name and for large spells this looked like being enough to get the home team over the line. Isles discovered a route back into the contention, however, and Fran Carroll’s second goal of the game galvanised them in the closing stages.
Conor Berrigan recorded six points for Isles and having restored parity with a brace of scores, they suddenly had momentum on their side. They had to settle for a stalemate in the end (Raheny 2-15, Erin’s Isle 3-12), but can take a number of positives into Wednesday week’s home encounter against O’Toole’s.
Gareth Cronin, Ian Fitzpatrick and Mickey Donoghue were particularly impressive for Isles, who currently edge out Raheny into sixth place.