O’Donovan magic helps Coshlea Gaels to extra-time victory in Limerick U21 A hurling final:

By John Redington Limerick Leader Sport

FOR A contest played in the depths of December, this was an outstanding advertisement for the game, not least from some of O’Donovan’s extraordinary scores from play out of a personal tally of 1-16 but he was also given a run for his money in the finishing stakes by Michael Ryan’s tally of a dozen points.

While their stars gave Coshlea the wow factor to convert bursts of inspiration into scores, Murroe-Boher’s steady pressure in the middle third had them riding the momentum coming up to the end of regulation time and allowed them to set the pace again during the twenty added minutes that followed.

Tearing straight into the attack from the throw-in, Murroe-Boher completely dominated the early exchanges, drew two fouls in as many minutes for Ryan to punish and the same man then landed a ’65.

Matters changed, however, when Coshlea started to find O’Donovan who potted a spectacular pair off jinking runs but then missed a pair before Ryan replied off his fourth placed ball at the other end.

O’Donovan hit form and hit back to equalise off another pair of hotshots and then grabbed the lead with a strike from way out on the left and
then grabbed the lead with a strike from way out on the left and

The Limerick U20 star followed up by ripping through the challenges to drive low into the far corner of the net. But the East Limerick side immediately steadied the ship as Cathal Sheridan pounced on Ryan O’Neill’s save off Joe Shanahan’s shot.

Cian Treacy and Ewan Dillon pointed for Coshlea with Ryan and Darren Collopy replying for Murroe-Boher. However, Michael Barry put the south Limerick combo back ahead by two.

Coming up to the break, Ryan showed his sharpness from play with two strikes to equalise before O’Neill came up from his goals to send over a free for a lead of 1-9 to 1-8 to Coshlea.

The second half started more sedately with only free from Ryan and O’Donovan punctuating the tight midfield play with alternating frees by the three-quarter mark before the Murroe side exerted enough pressure for Oisín Moss and sub Jamie Long gave them the lead.

ADillon quickly equalised but Sheridan and a Ryan free gave them an advantage of two with regulation minutes to go. But Coshlea saw O’Donovan ignite again with three scores on the bounce before Mark Nicholas ended six added minutes of added time for a last gasp equaliser.

The momentum carried into the first extra period as Nicholas, Ryan and Sheridan found the target before the Coshlea clearances began to find O’Donovan who sent over a pair of frees that were followed by Fergal O’Connor’s equaliser.

Barry and O’Donovan soon had Coshlea in control again only for Ryan’s free to cut Boher’s deficit at the change of ends to one-point yet again.

Straight from the restart, Collopy tied the scores up again but their tank was emptying quicker than Coshlea’s as O’Donovan found the space to tie up the title with an overhead pull on a bobbling ball followed up by a pair of frees that saw his side to the title.

SCORERS – COSHLEA GAELS: Paddy O’Donovan 1-16 (0-8 frees),Michael Barry, Ewan Dillon 0-2 each, Cian Treacy, Ryan O’Neill (free), Fergal O’Connor 0-1 each;

SCORERS – MURROE-BOHER: Michael Ryan 0-12 (0-7 frees, 0-1 ’65’), Cathal Sheridan 1-2, Darren Collopy, Mark Nicholas 0-2 each, Oisín Moss, Jamie Long 0-1 each.

COSHLEA GAELS: Ryan O’Neill (Effin); Shane Treacy (Staker Wallaces), Adam Lyons (Staker Wallaces), Seán Lyons (Staker Wallaces); Seán Canning (Effin), Fergal O’Connor (Effin), James Carroll (Staker Wallaces); Enda Sheedy (Staker Wallaces), Cillian O’Riordan (Effin); Ewan Dillon (Effin), Paddy O’Donovan (Effin), Aaron Moffat (Effin); Patrick Mooney (Staker Wallaces), Cian Treacy (Staker Wallaces), Michael Barry (Staker Wallaces).
SUB: Hughie Cronin (Effin) for Seán Lyons (55 minutes).

MURROE-BOHER: Killian Quaid; Seán O’Brien, Liam Quiad, Harry Fitzgerald; Ruaidhrí Casey, Euan Sheridan, Oisín Holmes; Mark Nicholas, Conor Foley; Brian O’Keeffe, Michael Ryan, Joe Shanahan; Jack O’Sullivan, Darren Collopy, Cathal Sheridan.
SUBS: Jamie Long for Jack O’Sullivan (38 minutes), Michael Hourigan for Cathal Sheridan (76 minutes).

REFEREE: Donnacha O’Callaghan (Feohanagh-Castlemahon).