High School, Kilkenny and Columba’s through

Leinster Schoolboy’s Senior Trophy, quarter-finals
John Scottus 0 Kilkenny College 3 (Eddie Healy, Jeremy Duncan, Eamann Walsh); High School 5 Mount Temple 5; High School won 4-3 on strokes; St Columba’s 2 (Ross Canning 2) Dundalk GS 0 aet
Kilkenny, High School and St Columba’s advanced to the semi-finals of the Senior School’s Trophy this week to join Sutton Park in the last four of the inaugural running of the competition and are one step away from the Senior Cup.

The Cats got through with a hard fought victory over John Scottus at Serpentine Avenue yesterday, making most of the attacking play as they pinned John Scottus back. Evan Mathews drew a fine save from a drag flick from Scottus keeper Peter Collins from a short corner in the 15th minute.

And he was again called into action when Eamann Walsh was put through one on one but saved well once again. The visitors continued to dominate though there were fleeting breaks from John Scottus skipper Andy Dunne.

With less than 30 seconds left in the first half, Kilkenny broke the deadlock when Mathews played a great ball into the circle for Eddie Healy to score despite the best efforts of Collins. The second half was played at a lower pace with few chances from each side but goals from Jeremy Duncan and Eamann Walsh proved the highlight.

Kilkenny now go on to face St Columba’s in the last four who overcame Dundalk GS after extra-time. Ross Canning struck two great goals in time added on push the Whitechurch school through after a fixture in which both sides defended like demons.

Last Thursday, High School reached the semi-finals in one of the most memorable school ties in living memories, prevailing on penalty strokes after a stunning 5-5 draw with Mount Temple at Danum
It was a truly remarkable tie with Temple scoring in the last minute of normal time to tie the game at 3-3 before falling two behind in extra-time only to score twice in the last 90 seconds and force penalties.

In both instances, the Clontarf’s school’s coach Gareth Borland sacrificed his goalkeeper Senan O’Mahony to sub on an extra forward. It led to some truly bizarre scenes, notably when Shane O’Donoghue was hacked down with an open goal gaping.

He was awarded a penalty corner but his dissent meant the decision was overturned and a sin-binning ensued from which Temple went up the pitch to forge their second incredible comeback.

But Stewart Williamson held his nerve to slot the vital penalty in a 3-2 result and gift High School a place in the semi-final where they will play Sutton Park , conquerors of Sandford Park .

The hosts had started the stronger with Mark Evans opening the scoring only for Mark Ryan and Andrew Hare to put the northsiders in front. O’Donoghue and Guy Prendergast, though, put High School in the box seat as normal time entered its final minute.

Desperate times saw Borland take his first desperate measure and immediately drew dividends when Adam Merry – the first round extra-time hero against King’s Hospital – popped up to make it 3-3 in the last seconds.

But the Rathgar school looked set to advance when O’Donoghue again scored and Stuart Gray put two between the sides for the first time in the game. But Temple produced their incredible comeback with Mark Ryan to the fore only to have their wings clipped in the penalty competition.

Senior B: Wesley B 4 St Mark’s 1
Junior Cup: Mount Temple 3 King’s Hospital 1
Junior A: Wesley 6 Newpark 0
Junior B: Wesley 0 Dundalk 3
Minor B: High School 0 Drogheda 0
U-13 Cup: Mount Temple 7 Dundalk 0
U-13 B: Wesley 3 Dundalk 0; Mount Temple 5 St Columba’s 2; Mount Temple 1 Sandford Park 0; St Killians 1 (Jake McCarthy) Sandford Park 0
U-13 C: St Killians 0 St Andrews C 0

* Details from the John Scottus vs Kilkenny match from Marcos Blake.

Partners of The Hook