Wednesday 17 January 2018

McGraths brace keeps UL on track to retain title

UL 3-14 UCD 0-16

Conor Martin, University of Limerick, in action against Seán Moran, University College Dublin (SPORTSFILE)
Conor Martin, University of Limerick, in action against Seán Moran, University College Dublin (SPORTSFILE)
Aidan McGuane, University of Limerick, in action against Colm Cronin, University College Dublin (SPORTSFILE)
James Madden, front, and Cian O'Callaghan, University College Dublin, leave the field after the game (SPORTSFILE)
Jack Browne, University of Limerick, in action against Oisín O'Rourke, University College Dublin (SPORTSFILE)
Tom Morrissey, University of Limerick, in action against Conor O'Shea, University College Dublin (SPORTSFILE)

UL effected a second-half turnaround to keep their hopes of retaining their title.

At Cork IT, UL trailed by 0-10 to 0-7 early in the second half, but Brian Lohan's side upped their game, scoring 1-5 without reply to take control, with John McGrath finding the net and Tom Morrissey and Jason Forde among the points.

UCD did bounce back with four points in a row, Oisín O'Rorke with three frees, to come to within a point, but they couldn't find an equaliser.

McGrath and Forde pushed UL further clear before they wrapped up the game with two quickfire goals. McGrath got his second after he caught Conor Martin's delivery, and then turned provider for Tommy Heffernan.

In the first half, UCD trailed by 0-3 to 0-1 early on, but then outscored UL by 0-6 to 0-1, with James Maher, Colm Cronin, Guinan and O'Rorke among the points, but Paul Maher's save to deny Ross King proved vital.

Scorers - UL: J McGrath 2-5 (0-4fs), T Morrissey 0-4, T Heffernan 1-1, J Forde 0-3fs, C McInerney 0-1. UCD: O O'Rorke 0-8 (0-7f, 0-1 65), J Maher 0-3, C Cronin, P Guinan 0-2 each, E Conroy 0-1.

UL - P Maher; S Roche, J Browne, G Ryan; B Heffernan, J Forde, B Stapleton; A McGuane, K Hehir; D Fitzgerald, J McGrath, C Martin; K O'Brien, T Morrissey, C McInerney. Subs: G Hegarty for Stapleton (6-8, blood), T Heffernan (1-1) for Fitzgerald (40), A Murphy for McInerney (51), Hegarty for Forde, PJ Scully for O'Brien, B Maher for Morrissey (all 60).

UCD - D Holohan; P Hannon, S Murphy, J Madden; H Lawlor, C O'Shea, S Moran; E Conroy, C O'Callaghan; J Maher, C Cronin, P Guinan; O O'Rorke, R King, C Devitt. Subs: J Malone for Conroy (43), T Phelan for King (45), J O'Connor for Moran (46), C Prendergast for Devitt (50), J Mullaney for Cronin (56).

Ref - C McAllister (Cork).

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