Limerick rally late to ensure hurling league win over Offaly

Jerome O'Connell

Reporter:

Jerome O'Connell

Email:

joconnell@limerickleader.ie

Limerick rally late to ensure hurling league win over Offaly

THE Limerick hurlers just about secured an Allianz Hurling League win over Offaly this Saturday evening, 1-25 to 3-15.

Limerick had to play the entire second half with 14-men after a red card for John Fitzgibbon just before half time.

Limerick needed six of the last seven points to secure the win.

Offaly played with the first half breeze and were 1-13 to 0-14 ahead at the break.

Limerick had opened the game with six unanswered points – all in eight minutes with four Lynch frees and one each from play from David Dempsey and John Fitzgibbon.

By the mid-point of the first half it was a 0-8 to 0-6 lead for the home side with Shane Dooley accounting for five of those Offaly scores from play.

Two from Pat Ryan had John Kiely’s men 0-10 to 0-8 clear and when Gearoid Hegarty and Andrew La Touche Cosgrave made it seven Limerick scorers on the mark it was 0-12 to 0-9 after 25-minutes.

But Limerick didn’t score for the next 10-minutes as Offaly took over with five unanswered scores.

Their goal came in the 27th minute from Dooley to level the game.

As half time approached Offaly were 1-13 to 0-12 ahead but Limerick finished with Lynch’s seventh of the half and a second from Gearoid Hegarty.

Limerick started the second half on top and had the first four scores of the half to move 1-17 to 1-13 ahead with 12-minutes of the half played,

Then Limerick were rocked by two Offaly goals in 90-seconds – the first from Dooley and the second from Oisin Kiely.

All of a sudden Offaly were 3-14 to 1-19 ahead with 54-minutes played.

But Limerick responded well with points from a Lynch free, Darragh O’Donovan, Gearoid Hegarty and James Ryan to go 1-23 to 3-14 ahead with five minutes left.

LIMERICK: David McCarthy; Sean Finn, Richie McCarthy, Mike Casey; Seamus Hickey, Diarmaid Byrnes, Declan Hannon; Pat Ryan, John Fitzgibbon; Gearoid Hegarty, David Dempsey, James Ryan; Andrew La Touche Cosgrave, Ronan Lynch, Seanie Tobin. Subs: Darragh O’Donovan for Pat Ryan (54mins), Graeme Mulcahy for Seanie Tobin (56mins), Stephen Cahill for Sean Finn (60mins), Alan Dempsey for Andrew La Touche Cosgrave (63mins).

OFFALY: James Dempsey; Paddy Rigney, Micheal Cleary, Paddy Delaney; Sean Ryan, Dermot Short, Ben Connelly; Conor Doughan, Padraig Guinan; Oisín Kelly, Shane Dooley, Sean Cleary; Peter Geraghty, Cillian Kiely, Emmett Nolan. Subs: Derek Morkan for Padraig Guinan (h-t), James Mulrooney for Cillian Kiely (48mins), Adrian Cleary for Peter Geraghty (48mins), Liam Langton for Emmet Nolan (60mins), Stephen Quike for Sean Cleary (69mins).

REFEREE: Fergal Horgan (Tipperary)