Thursday 29 June 2017

Champions UL into Independent.ie Fitzgibbon Cup final after late salvo sees off UCD

John McGrath, University of Limerick, in action against James Madden, University College Dublin, and Pat Hannon, right, University College Dublin. Independent.ie Fitzgibbon Cup, Semi-Final, University of Limerick v University College Dublin, Cork IT, Bishopstown, Cork. Picture credit: Piaras Ó Mídheach / SPORTSFILE
John McGrath, University of Limerick, in action against James Madden, University College Dublin, and Pat Hannon, right, University College Dublin. Independent.ie Fitzgibbon Cup, Semi-Final, University of Limerick v University College Dublin, Cork IT, Bishopstown, Cork. Picture credit: Piaras Ó Mídheach / SPORTSFILE

A brace of second half goals from John McGrath proved decisive as defending champions UL withstood a strong UCD challenge to progress to the Independent.ie Fitzgibbon Cup final.

The Limerick side were two points down at the break and conceded early in the second thanks to a free from UCD’s Oisin O’Rourke, before scoring an unanswered 1-5.  In the 43rd minute McGrath conjured a vital goal as he redirected a free into the back of the net.

In what felt like the blink of an eye Brian Lohan's men were 1-12 to 0-10 to the good with the Tipperary trident of McGrath, Forde and Heffernan all on target.

Undaunted, UCD enjoyed a purple patch of their own with O’Rourke and James Maher contributing four points to make it a one point game with less than 10 minutes on the clock.

Tipp senior McGrath was quick to rise to the occasion though, and blasted home a fine major before turning provider for Heffernan, who also found the net and ultimately ended what was a compelling semi final at CIT.

UL will meet winner of Mary I and LIT

 UL scorers: John McGrath 2-5 (0-4f, 0-1 ’65), Tommy Heffernan 1-1, Tommy Morrissey, 0-4, Jason Forde 0-3 (0-3f), Cathal McInerney 0-1.

UCD scorers: Oisin O’Rorke 0-8 (0-7f, 0-1 ’65), James Maher 0-3, Colm Cronin, Padraic Guinan 0-2 each, Eoin Conroy 0-1.

Referee: Cathal McAllister (Cork)

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