A POWERFUL DISPLAY in the first-half paved the way for UCC’s victory against UUJ in the Sigerson Cup this afternoon.
The first round clash, played at the Parnell’s GAA club in Coolock in Dublin, was marred by wretched weather conditions.
UCC had the benefit of a gale at their backs in the first-half and used it to their advantage to lead by 1-13 to 0-2 at the interval.
Managed by former Cork boss Billy Morgan, UCC exploded from the blocks and were 0-5 to 0-0 ahead by the 7th minute.
They got a further fillip in the 13th minute when Kerry senior Peter Crowley raced forward from defence and struck a terrific shot to the net.
When UUJ finally got off the mark in the 27th minute through a Conor McAliskey point, UCC had already amassed 1-11 with Conor Cox, Paul Geaney, Brian Coughlan and Gavan O’Grady to the fore in their scoring efforts.
UUJ emerged for the second-half and attempted to retrieve the 14-point deficit. They dominated possession early on and Down’s Paul Devlin caught the eye with a trio of points.
UCC notched what transpired to be their only score of the half in the 43rd minute when O’Grady curled over a free but UUJ’s shooting was wayward in attack despite further points from Emmet McGuckin and Devlin.
UCC, who had standout displays in defence from Jamie O’Sullivan and Eoin O’Mahony, and an influential figure in midfielder Peter Acheson, held on for success.
Scorers for UCC: Conor Cox 0-6 (0-6f), Peter Crowley 1-0, Gavan O’Grady 0-3 (0-3f), Paul Geaney, Brian Coughlan 0-2 each, Peter Acheson 0-1.
Scorers for UUJ: Paul Devlin 0-5 (0-2f), Conor McAliskey 0-2, Richard Donnelly, Emmett McGuckin 0-1 each.
UCC: Sean Mellet (Cork); Jamie O’Sullivan (Cork), Eoin O’Mahony (Cork), Phillip Galvin (Kerry); Peter Crowley (Kerry), Niall Daly (Roscommon), Tomas Clancy (Cork); Dara O’Sullivan (Kerry), Peter Acheson (Tipperary); Kevin O’Driscoll (Cork), Brian Coughlan (Cork), JB Spillane (Kerry); Gavan O’Grady (Kerry), Conor Cox (Kerry), Paul Geaney (Kerry).
Subs: Conor Sweeney (Tipperary) for O’Grady, Eoghan Buckley (Cork) for Coughlan, Paul Murphy (Kerry) for Geaney.
UUJ: Mark McReynolds (Tyrone); Karl McKaigue (Derry), Dean McNally (Tyrone), Duane Quinn (Tyrone); David Lavey (Armagh), Gerard McCartan (Down), Sam Dooney (Monaghan); Richard Donnelly (Tyrone), Chrissy McKaigue (Derry); Mattie Donnelly (Tyrone), Emmett McGuckin (Derry), Paul Devlin (Down); Conor McAliskey (Tyrone), Aaron Devlin (Derry), Ben Reilly (Down).
Subs: Eunan Deeney (Tyrone) for Dooney, Rory Corrigan (Fermanagh) for Reilly)
Referee: Gary McCormack (Dublin).
UCC and UUJ players in action. Pic: INPHO/Morgan Treacy
NUI Maynooth 1-9
IT Sligo 1-8
Last year’s finalists NUI Maynooth narrowly prevailed on home turf against IT Sligo in their first round encounter this afternoon.
NUI Maynooth enjoyed a 1-7 to 1-4 lead at half-time. They had been in front by 1-3 to 0-4 after 22 minutes with Kildare’s Sean Hurley finding the net and Leitrim’s Ronan Kennedy on target in the point-scoring department.
IT Sligo enjoyed a revival before the break as they were inspired by a goal from Gary Whyte yet NUI Maynooth were still in the ascendancy at the interval.
And in a low-scoring second-half it was the Kildare based college who eventually triumphed. They go forward to face either NUI Galway or Dublin IT, who meet next week after their game today was postponed, at the quarter-final stage.
Scorers for NUI Maynooth: Sean Hurley 1-1, Peadar Óg Ó Gríofa 0-3 (0-2f), Ronan Kennedy (0-1f), Jamie Gonoud 0-2 each, Seamus Mattimoe 0-1.
Scorers for IT Sligo: Stephen Coen 0-5 (0-4f), Gary Whyte 1-1, Joe Rodgers, David Maye 0-1 each.
Athlone IT 1-13
Carlow IT 0-6
Athlone IT, the hosts of this year’s Sigerson Cup finals weekend, enjoyed a successful start to their campaign with victory over Carlow IT in Athlone this afternoon.
The winners lead by 1-6 to 0-4 at the break with Roscommon senior Cathal Shine striking home the only goal of the game. Carlow IT had begun brightly with Wexford’s Ben Brosnan pointing the way but they suffered a huge setback when they were reduced to 14 men after Joe Kinahan was sent-off.
With Alan Coffey and Ger Egan shining up front, Athlone IT eventually ran out winners by a ten-point margin.
Scorers for Athlone IT: Alan Coffey 0-5, Cathal Shine 1-2 (0-1f), Ger Egan 0-3 (0-3f), John Mulligan, Frank Burke, James McGivney 0-1 each.
Scorers for Carlow IT: Ben Brosnan 0-4 (0-4f), Eoin Walsh, Brian Hurley 0-1 each.
‘He had great friends, because he was a great friend’ – Pat Gilroy pays tribute to Hill 16 hero Heffo