Boland and Fitzpatrick secure title for Clonmel
Liam Boland was the scoring hero for HS Clonmel as they toppled St Attracta's in Portarlington yesterday, but it was the contribution of super sub Robert Fitzpatrick that was perhaps most significant.
The Commercials clubman had just entered the fray as a blood sub when he got involved twice in the move that finished with Boland clipping to the net after 44 minutes.
Within seconds he was back on the sideline, but when reintroduced 11 minutes from time, Fitzpatrick fired over a super point under pressure that was to prove crucial.
St Attracta's will bemoan the failure to make the most of their possession as they dominated this encounter for large portions.
Clonmel were wasteful in front of the posts too -- though the swirling wind had a huge role to play in that -- while Attracta's goalkeeper John O'Hora had to make two outstanding saves, including a full-length stop from Shane Power, in the dying minutes.
Denis Coffey and Joseph Rogers led the way for the Sligo boys, with Rogers launching three points as they led 0-7 to 0-5 at the break.
They continued to hold sway into the wind, but Boland's goal changed everything.
The advantage stretched to three points, but with Brian Egan deadly from placed balls, Attracta's clawed themselves back to within a point.
Clonmel had Shane Taylor sent off in injury-time for a second yellow card, but it was too late to make any difference.
Scorers -- Clonmel: L Boland 1-4 (0-4f), B Hewitt 0-5 (0-4f), R Fitzpatrick 0-1. St Attracta's CS: B Egan 0-6 (0-5f), J Rogers 0-3 (0-2f), H Marren 0-2, Cathal Brennan 0-1.
HS Clonmel -- P Nolan; J Peters, J Ryan, M Quinlivan; S Taylor, A McGuire, B Maher; G Buckley, A Matassa; S Power, B Hewitt, T Kirwan; L Boland, L Carey, S Fagan. Subs: E Ryan for Kirwan (blood 40-41), R Fitzpatrick for Hewitt (blood 43-44), Fitzpatrick for Carey (49).
St Attracta's CS -- J O'Hora; C Gorman, J Connolly, C O'Dowd; R Connolly, J Kelly, J Matthews; C Killoran, D Coffey; Ciarán Brennan, J Rogers, C Davey; Cathal Brennan, B Egan, H Marren. Subs: C Curlis for Cathal Brennan (48), P Leonard for Ciarán Brennan (10).
REF -- S Carroll (Westmeath).