AFTER a five-year lapse, Tullylease booked a place in the JAHC decider after a deserved semi-final win over Castlemagner in Lismire last week.
EPS Bison Duhallow Junior A Hurling C'ship semi-final
Tullylease 1-17 Castlemagner 1-10
While hardly, the most polished victory, it mattered little to Tullylease, looking comfortable without being spectacular, there was no questioning which side emerged as the more formidable and balanced outfit.
The victors adapted better to the breezy conditions, their slicker stickwork much more evident that put last season's county junior b champions Castlemagner on the backfoot from the outset. Though operating against the elements, Tullylease availed of three lead points from Stephen O'Leary off play and a free.
Castlemagner knuckled down to their task and took encouragement from points delivered by Bryan Barry. That allowed Castlemagner work their way into the tussle, establishing a hold in the central positions thanks to the contribution of Pat Gayer, Seán Falvey and Conor Murphy.
That allowed space for Jack Cott and Barry to point to allow Castlemagner nudge ahead. Though Tullylease responded to gather parity, Castlemagner received a timely boost just on the call of the interval, an opportunist goal from Danny O'Callaghan after the ball took a deflection for a 1-7 to 0-7 advantage at the break.
Tullylease resumed to play with the elements at their back and quickly established control from the commanding play of James and Alan Sheehy along with Aidan O'Gorman and Liam O'Connor in defence, it laid the platform for an amount of possession into attack.
O'Connor and Finbarr Stokes rose white flags before a long delivery from Alan Sheehy allowed O'Leary blast to the Castlemsgner net to build up a 1-14 to 1-7 advantage. Castlemagner made a decent recovery and a trio of points from Barry offered semblance of a comeback.
Tullylease had reason to regret a wastage of possession, hitting twelve wides in the second half yet they underlined their superiority on late points to Kevin John Murphy, O'Connor and O'Leary to seal the outcome and secure Tullylease a place in the decider against Kilbrin or Freemount.
TULLYLEASE: M A O'Connor; A O'Gorman, J Sheehy, E Hannigan; P Sheehy, A Sheehy, L O'Connor 0-5 (2f, 1'65'), B Sheehy 0-1, P Cronin; F Stokes 0-2 (1f), S Hehir 0-2, S Stokes; D Stokes 0-1, S O'Leary 1-4 (0-2f), M Moloney 0-1. Subs. K J Murphy0-1 for Moloney(38), J Sheehan for Cronin (44).
CASTLEMAGNER: M O'Sullivan; K O'Mahony, A Lucey, C Galvin ; D O'Mahony, P Gayer, D Gayer; S Falvey 0-1, J Cott 0-1; C Murphy 0-1, C O'Sullivan, D Finn; J Sherlock, B Barry 0-7 (5f), D O'Callaghan 1-0. Subs. S Tobin for Murphy (29), Murphy for Sherlock (44).
Referee: J Sexton (Ballyhea)