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Triumphant Dungarvan 'can divide and conquer'

FOR Dungarvan Colleges, it was great while it lasted.

The amalgamation of Dungarvan CBS and St Augustine's came together to win back-to-back Harty Cup titles in 2012 and 2013.

And, on Saturday, before reverting to sole entities, they claimed the All-Ireland Colleges title for the first time.

In a repeat of last year's Croke Cup quarter-final, Dungarvan Colleges gained revenge against Kilkenny CBS, who suffered final heartbreak for a second successive year.

Five points separated the sides at the finish but Dungarvan registered 14 wides and missed a penalty.

The award, in the 35th minute, followed Evan Cody's red card. The Kilkenny CBS full-back was dismissed for a wild swipe at man of the match Patrick Curran as he cut through on goal.

Curran's penalty was saved by Kilkenny CBS wing-back Paddy Deegan on the line, and Dungarvan had to dig in after that.

But they got the job done at a sunny Semple Stadium and Tipperary native Darragh Duggan, the mastermind behind recent glories, reflected on the victory.

"Hopefully the two schools can go on now and excel in their own rights. We're just delighted – we never saw this as a combination," he said.

"We saw it as a team in a Harty Cup, and the Harty Cup was there to be won. We won that and we said, 'there's an All-Ireland there to be won. We're good enough to win it so why don't we go and do it?'

"We might not have finished in style here but everybody saw the heart."

Next weekend, further success could follow for Dungarvan CBS when they contest the All-Ireland 'B' final. Victory would crown a remarkable year as St Augustine's have already been crowned All-Ireland 'C' football champions.

In front of 2,010 spectators, Curran was the star of the show, despite the penalty miss.

Colin Dunford was excellent at midfield, as he has been all season, and semi-final hat-trick hero Darragh Lyons produced another fine display, especially in the second half when he dropped deep to provide extra cover.

Ryan Donnelly, two-goal hero in the Harty Cup final, came up with another big goal on a big day. He struck in the 15th minute from close range but Paddy Cahill responded within two minutes following a rare error by Dungarvan goalkeeper Laurence Power.

In the second half, Power would redeem himself with a brilliant save to keep out Kevin Kenny, who left the field five minutes from time following a hefty challenge from Tadhg Burke.

Referee Shane Hourigan decided to take no action against Burke and CBS mentor Matthew Ruth, a current Kilkenny senior panellist, admitted: "Yeah, I saw that and he didn't even give a free, we're disappointed with that.

Surprising

"He (Kenny) was down for nearly five minutes but (the ref) played only three minutes stoppage-time, that was surprising as well."

But overall, Ruth had no real complaints with the end result. Even when both teams were playing 15-a-side, Dungarvan looked the classier side.

"We gave it everything but came up against a stronger side, their physicality showed in the end," Ruth added.

"They were very strong in the air, clever hurlers. We just have to hand it to them, they were better on the day, no complaints."

SCORERS – Dungarvan Colleges: P Curran 0-9 (5fs, 1 '65'), R Donnelly 1-0, C Dunford 0-2, M Harney 0-1. Kilkenny CBS: P Cahill 1-3 (0-3fs), JP Treacy 0-2 (1 '65'), K Kenny, R Buckley 0-1 each.

DUNGARVAN COLLEGES – L Power; M Cronin, B Looby, K Looby; T Devine, K Daly, T Burke; C Curran, C Dunford; C Breathnach, M Harney, S Keating; D Lyons, R Donnelly, P Curran.

KILKENNY CBS – D Holohan; R Fitzpatrick, E Cody, C McGrath; C Cahill, P Deegan, D Scott; N Mullins, G Kelly; L Scanlon, K Kenny, JP Treacy; P Delahunty, S Cuddihy, P Cahill. Subs: R Buckley for Delahunty (45), M McWey for Cahill (52), J Byrne for Kenny (55).

REF – S Hourigan (Limerick).

Irish Independent