THE Limerick District Schoolboy League (LDSL) booked a Kennedy Cup semi-final meeting with the Dublin District Schoolboy League (DDSL) at UL this Thursday afternoon, thanks to a dramatic penalty shoot-out victory over the Donegal League in their quarter-final clash
Limerick goalkeeper, Glen Clancy, of Mungret Regional, proved the hero of the hour as his excellent save as the tie moved into a nail-biting sudden death penalty shoot-out proved decisive.
Hopes of an all-Limerick semi-final in the national U-14 competition were dashed however, when the Limerick County League suffered defeat to the fancied DDSL side in their quarter-final clash.
Limerick District had looked all set to book their last four place in normal time as substitute Paul O’Brien, of Mungret Regional, put them in front with less than 10 minutes remaining of their quarter-final.
O’Brien, who was on the pitch for no more than two minutes, finished superbly in the greasy underfoot conditions, following excellent approach play from Liam Byrnes and Lee Wall down the right. The lively Wall also had a first half goal disallowed.
Limerick paid the price for failing to convert their dominance in an insurance goal in the closing minutes and the plucky Donegal side struck for an equaliser with just a few minutes remaining. As there is no provision for extra-time the game, watched by a sizeable crowd, went straight to penalties.
Limerick District SL manager, Jason O’Connor said: “It was nail-biting stuff. We put a lot of work in this year with this team. The players commitment has been huge. Our fitness levels have showed all week.
“We went behind in all three of our group games and managed to turn that around. It was the opposite in the quarter-final, but there is no doubting the character and togetherness in this team.”
Limerick District SL’s semi-final clash with Dublin District SL goes ahead at UL this Thursday at 3pm.
The Limerick County boasted a 100% record prior to their Kennedy Cup quarter-final defeat to DDSL after beating the Midlands, Galway and Mayo Leagues without conceding a goal.
The Limerick County SL will face the Athlone League in the semi-final of the Plate competition at 12 noon this Thursday.
The Limerick Desmond League finished third in the Kennedy Cup group which contained the Limerick District. Limerick Desmond drew with both the Cavan/Monaghan League and the South Tipperary League. The Desmond League then progressed to play in the knock-out stages of the Shield competition.
Limerick DSL: Glen Clancy (Mungret Regional), Liam Byrnes (Summerville Rvs), Aaron Fitzgerald (Coonagh Utd), Conor Nicholas (Aisling Annacotty), Luke Fitzgerald (Summerville Rvs), Lee Wall (Shannon Hibs), Shane Donegan (Aisling Annacotty), Thomas Byrnes (Summerville Rvs), William Fitzgerald (Mungret Regional), Killian Markham (Coonagh Utd), Junior Echeruwe (Granville Rangers). Subs used: Shane Kelly (Summerville Rvs), Paul O’Brien (Mungret Regional), Gerard Barry (Coonagh Utd)
Limerick County: Jessie Smith (Charleville), PJ Hehir (do), Brian Buckley (do), Conor Phibbs (Herbertstown), Mike O’Brien (St David’s), Michael O’Grady (Knockainey), David Woulf (Kilmallock Utd), John Bateman (Meanus), James Fitzgerald (Herbertstown), John Hurley (do), Jack Callaghan (Charleville). Substitutes used: Tim Hawe (Charleville), Bradley McNamara (Herbertstown), Martin Carew (Knockainey)