Sauerland's sucker-punch sees Pobalscoil over the line
Corn Ui Mhuirí Final - PS Chorca Dhuibhne 2-13 Tralee CBS 1-10
Artistry gains adoration; simplicity earns results. The play wherein Franz Sauerland fisted to the net was more basic than beautiful - but most closely resembled a fatal swing at an afternoon's resistance by Tralee CBS.
It felt like reward for a second-half performance by Pobalscoil Chorca Dhuibhne that was solid where its initial advances were lukewarm. Their early plays continuously drifted towards the terrace-side wing and out over the side-line, often by way of misplaced passes.
But comfortable in retaining their kick-outs, punishment of five minutes' weakness by a Tralee team that had controlled the opening half, and another goal facilitated by a kick-pass as accurate as a Swiss watch advanced them to a win - perhaps by a margin wider than the gap between the teams' abilities.
Where the west Kerry boys were wasteful in the first 25 minutes, The Green were purposeful by way of running and kick-passing at ground left unmanned by the Pobalscoil. The first scoring play was of a kind that resurfaced time and again, as Michael Scanlon sprinted over the field's spine like a famished greyhound, before offloading to Michael Kelleher in space for the score.
Though James Ághas and Ruaidhrí Ó Beaglaioch scored points from two of Corca Dhuibhne's smarter early plays, Kelleher would again take credit for The Green through a levelling free kick.
The Pobalscoil's response was ground down by the CBS' manning of the middle third, a loss of control that was punished when Daniel Goggin fielded a lengthy kick-pass and handed to an expectant Darragh Regan, who lobbed the bar from a few paces beyond the '45.
The Tralee-based school captured further possession when the kick-out by Eoin Ó Brosnacháin overshot midfield, and their fourth point would arrive upon a precise effort by Goggin. A cross-field kick-pass by Ó Beaglaioch allowed for an explosive Pobalscoil retort, but its potential was not realised by the otherwise impressive Deividas Uosis, who beat his marker to the aerial ball, slithered into an opening, and clattered the goal's frame from the fringe of the small rectangle.
A successful '45 by Seán Quilter caused further aggravation, but two truly driven placed balls by Uosis and Ó Beaglaioch undermined the impression that the CBS were playing the more impressive football. The change in mood amongst the small crowd felt like a warning to the CBS, but The Green struggled to hold off a PS team displaying all the ruthlessness displayed in their 2017 McGirr Cup campaign.
Ó Beaglaioch levelled it up with a point and, with half-time imminent, corner-back Padraig White saw black having been forced to haul down Cathal Firtéar, who was lunging thirstily at goal.
As Eoghan Carroll warmed up upon news of White's dismissal, Ó Beaglaioch pointed the free kick the na Gaeil man had left behind, ensuring a lead more robbed than merited.
Not all of the untidiness that had hampered Corca Dhuibhne had been burned off, as was made painfully obvious a minute beyond half-time. Upon conceding a close-range free kick, the west Kerry team neglected to man the space facing Fergal O'Brien, who accepted the product of free-taker Kelleher's sharp vision and pierced it through Ó Brosnacháin's goal-line.
With The Green now holding an initiative that had seemed certain to remain with a team as streetwise as Corca Dhuibhne's, the combined cunning of Dylan Ó Géibheannaigh and Cillian Ó Failbhe engineered burglary. Within a play triggered by a James Ághas mark, Ó Géibheannaigh had the vision and skill to spot Annascaul man Ó Failbhe's run behind the Tralee cover, and he finished to the net.
It could have discouraged the CBS fatally, but The Green maintained their focus, their play ensuring an equal share of the next ten points, though Burns needed to be at his best to tame a strike at goal by Ó Beaglaioch that would have proven lethal to a less able shot-stopper.
It was only when Franz Sauerland's six foot two frame gifted him the advantage over Sean Hamilton and the oncoming Burns - allowing his right hand to steer an undercooked attempt by Ó Beaglaioch to the cordage - that the CBS yielded to the unavoidable. The two points Uosis added in the remaining six minutes were more decorative than defining.
Pobalscoil Chorca Dhuibhne: Eoin Ó Brosnacháin; Conchúir Ó Flannúra; Tomás Ó Dubháin; Colin Ó Muircheartaigh; Colm Ó Muircheartaigh; Gearóid Ó Leidhinn; Pádraig Ó Cathalláin; Franz Sauerland (captain, 1-0); James Ághas (0-1); Niall Ó Géibheannaigh; Cillian Ó Failbhe (1-0); Deividas Uosis (0-3, 0-2f); Dylan Ó Géibheannaigh 0-2; Cathal Firtéar (0-1); Ruaidhrí Ó Beaglaioch (0-6, 0-4f) Subs: Seán Óg Ó Móráin(for Firtéar, Aodhán Ó Dubháin for Ó Failbhe
Tralee CBS: Devon Burns; Padraig White; Tadhg Brick; Jack Myers; Sean Hamilton; John Walsh; Damien Bourke; Sean Quilter (0-2, 0-1 "45") David Fitzmaurice (0-1); Joseph Lenihan; Darragh Regan (0-2); Michael Scanlon; Daniel Goggin (0-1); Fergal O'Brien (1-0); Michael Kelleher (captain, 0-3, 0-2f) Subs: Eoghan Carroll for White, b/c, Dáire Keane (or Lenihan; Daniel O'Rourke for Goggin; Kevin Williams for Hamilton); Jason Mortimer 0-1, for Regan
Referee: David Murnane (Cork)