Cuala march on to Dublin final after hitting ominous form against St Vincent's
Cuala 3-21 St Vincent's 1-16
CUALA’S are one win away from a fourth Dublin SHC title in five years after a dismantling of St Vincent’s in Parnell Park this evening.
Earlier, St. Brigid’s qualified for just the second final in their history with an equally impressive victory over Croabh Chiarain, but the 2017 and '18 All-Ireland club champions will go into the final on October 20th as unbackable favourites.
St. Vincent’s, who knocked out reigning champions Ballyboden St Enda’s after extra-time in the quarter-final, scored a goal in the first minute of the game but over the course of 60 minutes, simply couldn’t live with Cuala’s at-times mesmeric movement.
On this showing, few, if any, clubs in the country could contain their spread of scoring options.
By half-time, Cuala had amassed 2-13 – all of which had come from play – and effectively killed the contest.
Both of their first half goals, scored by Seán Treacy and Mark Schutte, were tapped in from less than a yard out, as Vincent’s were pulled apart by the fluidity of the Cuala play.
Con O’Callaghan started at centre-forward and scored 0-5, but mostly Schutte played as the target man and he finished with 1-3 and a rake of direct assists.
As it happened, they went a goal down with 40 seconds when Brian Bolger smashed a shot past Seán Brennan after John Walsh won a ball in front of his man and accelerated towards goal.
Within two minutes, Cuala levelled it Seán Treacy poked in after Schutte crossed from the end line.
That prompted a spate of scoring in which Cuala scored 2-3 to no score, with Nicky Kenny prominent.
For Vincent’s, Conor Burke (0-5) and Cian McBride were their most productive players but it took John Hetherton, who scored 0-19 (16f) against Ballyboden, until the 24th minute to score.
Vincent’s scored the first four points of the second half but O’Callaghan stopped any question of a comeback with his fourth and Cuala strolled into their fourth final in five years.
SCORERS – Cuala: M Schutte 1-3, Con O’Callaghan 0-5, C Cronin 1-2, N Kenny 0-4, D O’Connell 0-3, S Treacy 1-0, C Sheanon 0-2, J Malone, D Treacy (f) 0-1 each. St. Vincent’s: C Burke, J Hetherton (4f) 0-5 each, B Bolger 1-0, R McBride, C McBride 0-2 each, M Sweeney, J Walsh 0-1 each.
CUALA: S Brennan; C O’Callaghan, D O Floinn, O Gough; S Timlin, S Moran, J Malone; S Treacy, C Sheanon; D O’Connell, C Cronin, D Treacy; C O’Callaghan, N Kenny, M Schutte. Subs: N Waldron for Kenny (47), M Conroy for Cian O’Callaghan (56), C Waldon for Malone (57), L Murphy for C Sheanon (59), E Murphy for Con O’Callaghan (60)
ST. VINCENT’S: D dePoire; R Pocock, R Trainor, C Harney; F Power, M O’Farrell, T Connolly; M Sweeney, R McBride; B Bolger, C Burke, J Hetherton; C McBride, W Moloney, J Walsh. Subs: R Fallon for Harney (h-t), N Billings for Trainor (43), A Moore for Moloney (47), S McCarry for Bolger (56)
REF: PJ Murray (St. Finian’s)