High School reach first ever All-Ireland Schools semi

High School reached the All-Ireland Schoolboys semi-final for the first time, becoming just the sixth different Leinster side to reach the knock-out phase of the competition.

Indeed, they are the first side outside Wesley and St Andrew’s to reach that phase from the province since Kilkenny in 2001; Newpark and Kings Hospital are the other schools to have done so.

High School made it through to the semi-finals for the first time

They did so with two wins and a draw, starting with second-half goals from Evan Jennings and Harry Lynch who made it 2-0 against Kilkenny. They followed up with a big 8-1 win over Raphoe & Prior which, in tandem with Wallace drawing with the cats, meant a draw would see the Rathgar side through.

Peter Lynch put High School 1-0 up from an Ali Empey assist against Wallace and while the Ulster school levelled in the second half, the Dubliners got the 1-1 they needed to go through.

It means three Leinster sides will be in the final four. Wesley recorded three wins from three in Pool A to head up a group that featured last year’s finalists Banbridge Academy.

Hat tricks from Ross Henderson and Cameron Ruttle under-pinned a big 10-2 win over King’s Hospital before they saw off Bangor 4-0. Against Bann, they went ahead in the first half following a brilliant pitch-length move, Josh Greaney involved twice to assist Rob McCollum to finish.

It was edgy at times in the second half but Wesley held on for the 1-0 win that saw them top their group.

St Andrew’s won three from three, too, in Pool B. They won 4-2 against Waterford’s Newtown with Sam Byrne and Stephen McCann giving them a great start before Irish Under-18 Ben Johnson pulled one back. Ryan Spencer made it 3-1 at half-time before Matteo Romoli scored from a corner to make the game safe.

A 6-1 win over Campbell followed and they closed out the group with a 2-1 win over Sullivan Upper. Byrne broke the deadlock in the latter tie in the 16th minute but Sullivan levelled in the second half. Greg Arrowsmith grabbed the winner.

Friends are the one non-Leinster side to advance. They emerged as top of Pool D, beating RBAI 5-0 and Villiers 3-0. A 1-1 draw with Ashton was enough for them to get through.

Pool A: Wesley 10 (R Henderson 3, C Ruttle 3, B O’Grady, J Greaney, H Burns, C McKay) King’s Hospital 2 (P Hickey, B Mapfumo); Bangor 1 (Z McKee) Banbridge 2 (H Lockhart, P Campbell)

Pool B: St Andrew’s 4 (S Byrne, S McCann, R Spencer, M Romoli) Newtown 2 (B Johnson, G Morgan O’Brien); Campbell 1 (S Abbas) Sullivan 2 (S Erskine, I Hart)

Pool C: High School 2 (E Jennings, H Lynch) Kilkenny 0; Royal & Prior 2 Wallace 7 (T Chambers 3, A Scott 2, B Nelson 2)

Pool D: Ashton 2 (T McGrath, M Gallagher) Villiers 3 (G Hodkinson, J Hodkinson, J von Maydell); RBAI 0 Friends 5

Pool A: Kings Hospital 0 Banbridge 2 (J Reid, R Simms); Wesley 4 (R McCollum, R Henderson, S Ryder, B O’Grady) Bangor 0; Wesley 1 (R McCollum) Banbridge 0; Bangor 2 (C Walker, R Lyall) Kings Hospital 1 (J Maginnis)

Standings: 1. Wesley 9pts (+13) 2. Banbridge 6pts (+2) 3. Bangor 5pts (-3) 4. Kings Hospital 0pts (-12)

Pool B: Newtown 2 (H McCarthy 2) Sullivan 1 (H Morris); St Andrew’s 6 (G Arrowsmith 2, B Walker, J Pullen, R Marchant, S Byrne) Campbell 1 (S Abbas); Newtown 2 (B Johnson 2) Campbell 2 (S Abbas 2); St Andrew’s 2 (S Byrne, G Arrowsmith) Sullivan 1 (H Morris)
Standings: 1. St Andrew’s 9pts (+8) 2. Newtown 4pts (-1) 3. Sullivan Upper 3pts (-1) 4. Campbell College 1pts (-6)

Pool C: Wallace 1 Kilkenny 1; High School 8 (W Anderson 2, A O’Regan 2, P Lynch, R Howard, C Adair, W Cosgrove, A Empey) Royal & Prior 1; Wallace 1 High School 1 (P Lynch); Kilkenny 1 Royal & Prior 2
Standings: 1. High School 7pts (+10) 2. Wallace 5pts (+5) 3. Royal & Prior 3pts (-12) 4. Kilkenny 1pt (-2)

Pool D: Ashton 1 (M Gallagher) RBAI 0; Villiers 0 Friends 3 (M Milliken, O Kidd, C Quinn); Ashton 1 (M Gallagher) Friends 1 (O Kidd); Villiers 1 (J von Maydell) RBAI 0
Standings: 1. Friends 7pts (+8) 2. Villiers 6pts (-1) 2. Ashton 4pts (0) 4. RBAI 0pts (-7)

Bandon: Semi-final, 9.30am
Midleton: Semi-final, 9.30am
Garryduff: Final, 2.30pm

Partners of The Hook