Flying Flynn key as CIT's reign ends on sour note
The champions have been dethroned and they went down fighting -- in every sense of the word -- to DCU in Glasnevin yesterday.
Led by Dublin half-forward Paul Flynn, DCU had deservedly stretched their lead to six points late on when referee Paul Finnegan dismissed Paul Kerrigan for retaliating on Philip McMahon. Some of his team-mates were lucky not to join him.
It was a sour end to a match that failed to really ignite, despite the array of inter-county talent on the pitch.
To be fair, there were some impressive performances from DCU, who will face NUI Maynooth in the semi-finals on Friday week. Only one of their 15 scores came from a free, as skipper Paddy Andrews and fellow corner-forward David Kelly scored four points apiece from play as they fed on good ball coming from the powerful Flynn and Cathal Cregg in the half-forward line.
Corner-backs Kevin Nolan and McMahon's handled Cork forwards Daniel Goulding and Colm O'Neill well, while Bryan Cullen was his typically assured self at centre-back.
CIT opened the scoring through Barry John Walsh, but it was DCU who looked the more accurate, despite Flynn's early goal attempt flashing wide, as points from Cregg, Johnny Cooper and Kelly put them into an early lead.
Two good scores from Goulding brought the Cork students level. Dermot Sheridan and Kelly put the hosts two up, but O'Neill and Andrew O'Sullivan soon levelled matters again and it looked as if there would be nothing between the sides at the break.
But Andrews had other ideas, cutting in from the left to score his first point before winning a free that Brian Sheridan stuck over to send them in 0-7 to 0-5 to the good at half-time.
O'Neill and Flynn swapped early in the second period, but two fine Andrews points combined with another from Kelly, after brilliant approach play from Flynn, to give DCU a five-point cushion after 43 minutes.
CIT cut the lead to two points with three scores in two minutes through two Goulding frees and a Kerrigan point. But they wouldn't score again as sub Ray Cullivan fisted Dermot Sheridan's dropping ball off the bar and over and Andrews, Kelly and Cregg finished a comprehensive job.
The visitors' frustration boiled over as the game entered injury-time and Cooper had to leave the field following an off-the-ball clash with O'Sullivan, who was fortunate to escape censure, before McMahon's overly robust challenge saw Kerrigan lash out and he was sent to the line.
Scorers -- DCU: P Andrews, D Kelly 0-4 each, C Cregg 0-2, B Sheridan (f), R Cullivan, P Flynn, D Sheridan, J Cooper 0-1 each.
CIT: D Goulding 0-4 (2f), C O'Neill 0-2, A O'Sullivan, BJ Walsh, P Kerrigan 0-1 each.
DCU -- M Boyle; P McMahon, K Gavin, K Nolan; J Cooper, B Cullen, D Mooney; D Sheridan, H McGrillen; P Flynn, R Flanagan, C Cregg; P Andrews, B Sheridan, D Kelly. Subs: C Rafferty for McGrillen (h-t), M Lyng for Flanagan (37), C Rafferty for Cooper (55).
CIT -- L Sheehan; N Galvin, R Carey, R O'Dwyer; S Donoghue, A Walsh, C O'Driscoll; P O'Flynn, S O'Hare; G Sayers, P Kerrigan, A O'Sullivan; C O'Neill, BJ Walsh, D Goulding. Subs: J Fitzpatrick for Sayers (37), B Maguire for O'Dwyer (53), R Leahy for O'Sullivan (55).
Ref -- P Finnegan (Louth).