MALLOW produced a powerful display to sweep aside the challenge of the defending champions Bally Rovers (Ballyhea/Ballyclough) in the Barnes Jewellers Fermoy U-21 'A' HC quarter final at Buttevant last week.
U-21 'A' HC
Mallow 3-21 Bally Rovers 1-9
Following a close opening half just two points separated the teams at the short whistle but on the changeover Mallow totally dictated matters as they went on to record an easy victory and secure a place in the semi final against Charleville.
The opening stages saw both teams quick into the action and by the 7th minute they were level at 0-3 to 1-0 the Mallow points coming by Aaron Sheehan (2) and Cormac Murphy while Damian Buckley had the Bally Rovers goal after receiving a good pass from Eugene O'Leary. This was the trend for most of this half with Pa O'Callaghan (3) Aaron Sheehan (2) and Pa Herlihy trading points by the end of the first quarter to leave proceedings firmly in the balance when tied at 1-3 to 0-6.
Then came a period of dominance by Bally Rovers with Jonathan McCarthy, Jack Harty, William Fitzgerald, Dean Copps, Mark Heffernan, Eugene O'Leary, Pa O'Callaghan and keeper Mikey Browne commanding figures and three points in as many minutes moved them three clear by the 21st minute.
Mallow recovered well from here with Sean Hayes and Yassin Browne causing many problems in the full forward line and moments later Hayes was upended in the square and a penalty awarded where Kevin Sheehan decided to take the safer often when his effort went over for a point. From the resultant puckout by Mikey Browne, Mark Heffernan gained possession and he in turn set up Damian Buckley for a well taken point.
However at this stage Mallow were slowly building the momentum with Sean Hayes, Aaron Sheehan and Brian Murphy having points to get them back on level terms. Bally Rovers edged ahead again through a Pa O'Callaghan free but in injury time a delivery by the hardworking Alec Luttrell resulted in Sean Hayes getting through for the first of his three goals as the winners held a 1-10 to 1-8 interval lead,
For the second half another close encounter was anticipated. However, this was not the case as Mallow dominated totally from the offset. Their backline defended confidently as a unit spearheaded by Cormac Murphy at centre back as they restricted their opponents to just one more score in this half when Pa O'Callaghan scored a great point from out near the sideline.
At midfield Pat Healy and Conor Hannon gained the upperhand that ensured plenty supply to their forwards who worked very as a unit in this period.
In the 40th Sean Hayes got through for his second goal following good work by Cormac and Brian Murphy and when Hayes had his hat trick of goals in the 50th minute they surged into a 3-17 to 1-9 advantage. It was all Mallow at thus juncture with Cormac Murphy (2) Aaron Sheehan, Yassin Browne adding points that set them on their way to a comprehensive victory.
Mallow meet Charleville in the semi-final this Saturday in Castletownroche 4.45 pm
MALLOW: Padraigh Buckley, J O'Hanlon, K O'Connor, D Sheehan, A Luttrell, C Murphy 0-4, Padraigh Buckley, P Healy, C Hannon, B Murphy 0-1, S Hayes 3-3, K Sheehan 0-2 (0-1 pen) A Sheehan 0-9 (0-6f, 0-1 '65'), Y Browne 0-1, P Herlihy 0-1. Subs: M O'Rourke for B Murphy, J Murphy for A Luttrell,
BALLY ROVERS: M Browne, L O'Shea, T.J. Garvey, J Harty, W Fitzgerald, J McCarthy, L Hanley, D Copps, J O'Mahony, D Relihan, M Heffernan 0-1, J Morrissey, E O'Leary 0-1, P O'Callaghan 0-6 (0-5f), D Buckley 1-1. Subs: S Roche for L O'Shea, D O'Shaughnessy for J O'Mahony.
Referee:: Walter Cole (Buttevant)