UCC overcome Garda College in Sigerson Cup

Report by Adrian McGearty

Sigerson Cup 1st round: Garda College 2-7 / UCC 1-12

There were a number of changes made to the side on viewing the squad from the previous higher education League Final win over UL. Nemo Rangers Michael Martin replaced Kerry’s Eoghan O’ Brien in goals as the defensive rearguard remained the same from the previous game. Changes up field saw Kerry’s Andrew Barry come in for the injured Sean Powter with Clare’s Eimhin Courtney dropping out for Cork’s Garry Murphy. Murphy had a solid game against Nemo Rangers in a recent friendly the previous week with An Ghaeltacht’s Brian O’ Beaglaoich replacing county compatriot Padraig Lucey.

Garda College looked to show their ascendancy early on through Jonathan Ryan’s goal early on gave the home side the early ascendancy. Cork’s intercounty player Stephen Sherlock started on the bench. UCC had started well with a three-point lead before Johnny Ryan’s goal drew the home side level. Points from Mc Daniel, Kelleher and Gallagher pushed Garda College clear before the away side rallied with two efforts from Killian Spillane and one from Cork Star Kevin Crowley. An unfortunate red card for UCC’s Gary Murphy took place at the end of the first half after he picked up two quick yellow cards.

Both teams had gone into the half time interval level. The momentum of the second half turned as Garda College’s Tommy Mc Daniel scored a vital goal with less than 15 minutes remaining. UCC did well to recover and reduce margin through Kerry star Sean O’Shea, Spillane and sub Sherlock. Johnny Ryan again cropped up with a vital score for the home side with a few minutes remaining saw the shock of the round almost complete only for the home side to go down to 14 men through a black card to Alan Gaughan. A last gasp attack by UCC saw the ball going into the square, only for Spillane to be fouled. The referee awarded a penalty that allowed for Spillane to dust himself down and slot home the spot kick for the away side to pull the rabbit out of the bag and gain a hard fought victory.

Scorers – UCC: K Spillane 1-3 (1-0pen), S O’Shea 0-5 (2f), G Murphy, J Kennedy 0-1, K Crowley 0-1, S Sherlock 0-1.

Garda College: J Ryan 1-2, T McDaniel 1-2 (1-0pen), D Gallagher 0-1, P Kelleher 0-1, D Meehan 0-1.

UCC: M Martin (Cork); F Clifford (Kerry), J Foley (Kerry), M McSweeney (Cork); K Crowley (Cork), S Cronin (Cork), C Kelly (Cork); J Kennedy (Tipperary), A Barry (Kerry); B O Beaglaoich (Kerry), S O’Shea (Kerry), K Flahive (Cork); G Murphy (Cork), C Dorgan (Cork), K Spillane (Kerry).

Subs: S Sherlock (Cork) for Dorgan 50, L O’Donovan (Cork) for Clifford 54.

Garda College: S Murphy (Limerick), R O’Connor (Galway), S Gaul (Wexford), K Histon (Cork); K Daly (Westmeath), T Featherstone (Roscommon), P Varley (Galway); C Russell (Clare), D Gallagher (Longford); E Cleary (Clare), P Kelleher (Cork), G Rodgers (Longford); J Ryan (Galway), D Meehan (Cavan), T McDaniel (Westmeath).

Subs: S Cunningham (Dublin) for Cleary 38, A Gaughan (Westmeath) for Russell 44, E Duffy ((Louth) for Kelleher 48, S Ryan (Clare) for Meehan 52, J Morris (Cavan) for Featherstone 55, G Casey (Cork) for McDaniel 60.

Referee: John Hickey (Carlow)