Dublin 2-7 Kilkenny 0-17
Leinster MHC Semi-Final
By Darragh Twomey at Parnell Park
Kilkenny advanced through to the Leinster Minor Hurling Championship Final with a four point win over Dublin at Parnell Park on Saturday afternoon (22nd June).
Dublin lead by three points at the break, but Kilkenny excelled in the second half to beat the young Dubs, who only managed three second half points.
The weather conditions were far from perfect as the heavy wind and rain slowed the game down, causing simple mistakes from both sets of players.
The game got off to an exciting start as both sides had chances early on. An Alan Murphy free for Kilkenny dropped short, causing a bit of confusion amongst the Dublin defenders, while Eoghan Conroy would have found the net only for a good save from Darren Brennan in the Kilkenny goal.
Séan Treacy opened the scoring in the third minute with a point for Dublin. Treacy doubled his sides lead two minutes later with a free.
Murphy scored two points in as many minutes from frees to get the scoreboard ticking over for Kilkenny.
The Cats found themselves four points ahead in the nineteenth minute thanks to two Murphy frees and a point each from Garry Kelly and Daniel O’Connor who struck over brilliantly off his left.
Twenty-one minutes in Dublin were awarded a twenty-one yard free. Much to the surprise of the respectable crowd that gathered in Donnycarney, Dublin goalkeeper Jonathan Treacy made his way up the field to take the free.
It was clear to all that the Na Fianna man was had his eyes on the goal, but a point was a decent consolation.
Two minutes later Dublin corner-forward Con O’Callaghan was smothered in the box by four Kilkenny players and the referee from Carlow signalled for a penalty.
Treacy made the long trip from his goal at the Church End of the ground to have another crack at goal. This time he made no mistake and absolutely buried the ball into the net to bring the game level again.
Murphy put Kilkenny ahead again with a free, but that lead only lasted a minute as Chris Bennett scored Dublin’s second goal of the game.
The Faughs clubman went bearing down on goal, hit the ball into the ground and it hopped into the bottom-corner of the goal.
Séan Treacy added a free for Dublin to give his side a 2-4 to 0-7 lead at the interval.
Jason Stanley scored a fantastic point for Kilkenny a minute after the restart.
Murphy added a free and it was a level game after thirty-eight minutes when Ciarán Ryan scored a great point from midfield.
Kilkenny continued to impress, and went ahead thanks to a Murphy free.
Kilkenny corner-forward Kevin Kenny was kept very quiet throughout the game thanks to a solid performance by Dublin’s John Bellew, but he did manage to score a good point forty-two minutes into the game.
A minute later, Liam Blanchfield scored a massive point for Kilkenny, and Dublin were struggling big time.
Sixteen minutes into the second half, Dublin finally scored their first point since before the break, and it came courtesy of a Séan Treacy free.
That long-awaited point was cancelled out a minute later by Kilkenny substitute Michael Kenny, who made an immediate impact on the game.
The hard-working Cian Boland assisted Bennett who pointed for The Dubs, while Ryan slotted over a point at the other end.
Bennett reduced the deficit to two four minutes from full-time, but two more frees from Murphy sent The Cats through to the final on a scoreline of Dublin 2-7 Kilkenny 0-17.
Dublin: J Treacy (1-1 f), S Treacy (0-4, 0-3 f), C Bennett (1-2).
Kilkenny: J Stanley (0-1), C Ryan (0-2), L Blanchfield (0-1), G Kelly (0-1), K Kenny (0-1), D O’Connor (0-1), A Murphy (0-9 f), M Kenny (0-1).
Dublin: Jonathon Treacy, Jake Malone, Cian Mac Gabhann, John Bellew, Mark Cavanagh, Shane Barrett, Fionn Ó Riain-Broin, Rian McBride, Andrew Jameson-Murphy, Séan Ryan, Séan Treacy, Eoghan Conroy, Con O’Callaghan, Cian Boland, Chris Bennett. Subs: Eoin Mac Aodh for S Ryan (53 mins); Séan Mac Gilla Riadh for E Conroy (57 mins).
Kilkenny: Darren Brennan, James Tyrell, Evan Cody, Ciarán Wallace, Niall Mullins, Jason Stanley, Darragh Joyce, James Maher, Ciarán Ryan, Liam Blanchfield, Garry Kelly, Vinny Teehan, Kevin Kenny, Daniel O’Connor, Alan Murphy. Subs: Michael Kenny for G Kelly (47 mins); Eoin Ó Cionaoith for D O’Connor (49 mins); Seán Breathnach for V Teehan (46 mins).
Referee: Paud O’Dwyer (Carlow).