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High achievers slip past Sutton Kilkenny

HIGH School and Kilkenny will contest the inaugural Leinster Schools Senior Trophy final as they saw off the challenge of Sutton Park and St Columba's, respectively.

Into the bargain, they have also qualified for the semi-finals of the Leinster Senior Cup to face St Andrew's and Wesley in the province's premier schools competition.

High School will travel to face St Andrew's in Booterstown in that competition after they survived Sutton Park's second-half comeback to triumph 3-2 on the Howth peninsula.



crash

The Rathgar visitors got off the perfect start when Shane O'Donoghue flung in a rocket of a drag-flick, and were 2-0 up inside the quarter-hour when Stuart Gray rounded on a Stephen Reid ball into the circle to crash home from 15 metres.

But, thereafter, Sutton finally worked out their more intricate patterns to control the ball for long periods, with Ferdia Carty, Harry Spain and Shane Diveney to the fore.

Three penalty corners were well dealt with by High School keeper Gareth Carragher and his defensive team, while O'Donoghue's simple but effective overhead ploy from the sweeper meant High School were always a threat on the counter.

But they were undone in the 40th minute by such a tactic when both attacker and defender misread a Spain high ball and Ollie Callelly snuck in behind the visitor's defence to shoot.

His effort was denied by Carragher but the next wave found Chris Hayes on the flick spot to roll home.

High School restored the advantage by the 45th minute when Gray followed up a rebound off the post after a slick, pitch-length move for 3-1.

Breathing room, though, only lasted for two minutes as Carty earned a corner and Spain netted at the second attempt.

It left 23 minutes to find an equaliser but, despite Sutton spending more time on the offensive, the visitors looked the more likely to score.

Tom Fee pulled off a fine double save before being subbed off for an extra outfielder in the last five minutes.



pivotal

Carragher had to produce one more fine save from Hayes to seal High School's place in the Trophy final, the Senior B side knocking out their second A league school in successive weeks -- previously beating Mount Temple on penalties.

Kilkenny, by contrast, were more comfortable as they advanced to the final of the Senior Trophy with a 6-0 win over Rathfarnham side St Columba's.

Irish U16 international Jeremy Duncan was a pivotal figure, scoring twice while also supplying a pair of assists as the Cats notched four goals in the last 10 minutes to eventually pull away.

Sutton Park: Tom Fee, Harry Spain, Eoin O'Reilly, Ferdia Carty, Zach Owens, Andrew Tyrell, Freddy McGuinness, Ciaran Lowney, Shane Diveney, Chris Hayes, Luke Moore, Ollie Callelly, Daniel Bergin.

High School: Gareth Carragher, Mal Rogan, Stephen Reid, Niall O'Leary, Shane O'Donoghue, Guy Prendergast, Matthew Holder, Conor Sexton, Sam Williamson, Jonathon McNulty, Ian Irvine, Michael McNulty, Stuart Gray


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