Scanlon penalty save inspires Limerick's victory

Only a point separated Limerick and Waterford at half-time at the Gaelic Grounds.

But the game turned two minutes after the restart when Limerick goalkeeper Brian Scanlon saved a penalty from Mark Ferncombe. Waterford did not score after that and Limerick tacked on 1-7 to ease into a semi-final showdown with Clare on June 9 with a 2-12 to 0-7 win.

"It was a big moment all right. It was a great save by Brian Scanlon," said Limerick manager Maurice Horan afterwards. "We were sickened when we saw the referee awarding a penalty. But Brian got himself organised, he had a minute or two.

"I won't say he did a Petr Cech on it but he saved it. It was a turning point for us."

Waterford kicked all of their scores from play in the opening half but failed to register a single score after the restart and, aside from the penalty miss, they also shot eight wides in the second half.

"At the end of the day we had opportunities to close the gap in the last 10 minutes but that didn't happen. It is very difficult," reflected Waterford boss John Owens.

"It was one of those days we felt if we could get within striking distance, but we had that in the first half and we didn't push on and that was disappointing."

He will face a difficult task getting them ready for the qualifiers but they gave as good as they got in the opening half but in Ian Ryan, who finished with 1-7, Limerick had a match winner.

Waterford's collapse was not evident in the opening half in front of a crowd of 2,431 and Limerick led by 1-5 to 0-7 at the break after both sides picked off some fine scores.

The crucial score of the opening period was a goal after 19 minutes from Seamus O'Carroll when Waterford goalkeeper Kieran Cotter failed to deal with a swirling high ball from the right by Paul Kinnerk. It broke kindly for Eoghan O'Connor and he set up O'Carroll who blasted to the roof of the net.