UL’s Sigerson Cup journey came to an end in Belfast on Friday afternoon as they had no answer to an outstanding UCD side bidding for their first title in 20 year.
UL, appearing at the finals weekend for the first time since 1997 following wins over IT Tralee and Queens University, were 2-5 to 0-1 down after 18 minutes and 3-9 to 0-2 down at the break. Kildare’s Niall Kelly and Laois’s Eoin Lowry netted for UCD in that opening half.
UL improved in the second half and four points from Bryan O’Shea and a goal from Ian Burke narrowed the gap but they were always fighting a losing battle and UCD’s fourth goal from Tipperary’s Liam Casey ensured a final score of 4-12 to 1-9.
UCD play Dublin rivals DCU in the final on Saturday.
SCORERS - UCD: Niall Kelly 2-0, John Heslin 0-5 (four frees), Liam Casey, Eoin Lowry (0-1 ‘45) 1-1 each, Paul Mannion 0-3 (one free), Conor McCarthy, Tommy Moolick 0-1 each. UL: Brian O’Shea 0-4 (one free, one ‘45), Ian Burke 1-0, Daniel Daly 0-2, Aidan Rowan, Ruairi Deane, Kevin Moore (free) 0-1 each.
UCD: Eoghan Keogh (Mountmellick, Laois); Ryan Wylie (Ballybay, Monaghan), David Hyland (Athy, Kildare), Michael Fitzsimons (Cuala, Dublin); Seán O’Dea (Kilteely-Dromkeen, Limerick), David Byrne (St Olaf’s, Dublin), Jack McCaffrey (Clontarf, Dublin); Jack Barry (Na Gaeil, Kerry), Liam Casey (Cahir, Tipperary); Niall Kelly (Athy, Kildare), James McEntee (Curraha, Meath), Conor McCarthy (Scotstown, Monaghan); John Heslin (St Loman’s Mullingar, Westmeath), Eoin Lowry (Killeshin, Laois), Paul Mannion (Kilmacud Crokes, Dublin). Subs: Niall McInerney (St Brigid’s, Roscommon) for McCaffrey (15), Stephen Coen (Hollymount-Carramore, Mayo) for Hyland (half-time), Paul Kingston (Arles-Killeen, Laois) for McCarthy (HT), Robert Carr (Newtown Blues, Louth) for Mannion (40), Tommy Moolick (Leixlip, Kildare) for Kelly (51)
UL: Colm O’Driscoll (Castlehaven, Cork); Eamonn Kiely (Brosna, Kerry), Cathal Long (An Ghaeltacht, Kerry), Patrick O’Connor (Dingle, Kerry); Aidan Rowan (Cashel, Longford), Denis Daly (St Mary’s, Kerry), Fergal Boland (Aghamore, Mayo); Gearoid Hegarty (St Patrick’s, Limerick), Ruairi Deane (Bantry Blues, Cork); Danny Neville (Ballysteen, Limerick), Shane Killoran (Elphin, Roscommon), Cian Sheehan (Newcastlewest, Limerick); Ian Burke (Corofin, Galway), Kevin Moore (Glin, Limerick), Bryan O’Shea (Dr Crokes, Kerry). Subs: David Larkin (Horeswood, Wexford) for Hegarty (20), Paul White (Rathkeale, Limerick) for F Boland (22), Luke Boland (Moyle Rovers, Tipperary) for Larkin (BC, 26), James Naughton (St Senan’s, Limerick) for Moore (44), Cian O’Dea (Kilfenora, Clare) for Killoran (45), Niall Donovan (Arravale Rovers, Tipperary) for Daly (51)
REFEREE: Ciaran Branagan (Down)