Sigerson Cup first round: NUI Maynooth 1-8 Queen’s University, Belfast 0-13
DOWN star Marty Clarke scored five points as Queen’s University recorded a fine away over Johnny Doyle’s NUI Maynooth in the Sigerson Cup last night.
The experienced centre half-forward showed an array of skills that was too hot for the youthful Maynooth team to handle and James McCartan’s men were fully deserving of their two-point win.
There was only seven minutes on the clock when he served warning to Maynooth of what was to come when he struck the crossbar with a dipping shot.
That was part of a dominant opening for the Belfast university and they scored the first three points of the game inside the first 12 minutes through Henry Brown, Clarke and Ryan Murray.
They probably should have been further ahead but they were rocked in the 18th minute when a powerful run by Paul Cribbin set up a goal for Eoin Roche to put the Kildare university ahead for the first time, 1-1 to 0-3.
Murray and Ruairi Corrigan scored points late in the half to leave Queen’s one ahead at the break but two Evan O’Carroll frees, and another by Neill Flynn, soon after the restart gave the home team the lead again.
That sparked the best spell of the game for Queen’s as they rattled off four unanswered points in six minutes. Clarke kicked two of those from frees, and was also heavily involved in creating a lovely point for Ruairi Corrigan.
Meath’s Joey Wallace ended that run of scores with Maynooth’s first point from play in the 48th minute but Clarke then kicked the point of the game in reply on the run from almost the left sideline.
Cribbin came back and kicked one of his trademark scores after he brushed off a couple of challenges and then split the posts to leave the home team down by one point with ten minutes.
The free takers, Clarke and Neil Flynn, swapped points to leave it as you were heading into the final four minute before Clarke was again involved.
He created some space for Murray to move on and land the final score.
Maynooth did have one late goal chance but Jonathan Deeney was quickly off his line to leave Fergal Conway with very little to shoot at and the chance was lost, leaving Queen’s as deserved winners. They now play University of Limerick or IT Tralee.
Maynooth: E McDonagh; E Mullan, J McCarron, J Costello; T Gibbons, T Hannifin, C Slevin; F Conway, E O’Carroll (0-2 frees); B Duggan, N Flynn (0-4 frees), P Cribbin (0-1); J Wallace (0-1), R McManus, E Roche (1-0). Subs: F Flanagan for Hannifin (34), H Walsh for Duggan (42), S Farrell for Roche (51).
Queen’s: J Deeney; G McCabe, C Cullen, B Burns; N Delarghy, S Heffron, M Monan (0-)1; H Brown (0-1), A Morgan; R Corrgian (0-2), M Clarke (0-5, 0-3 frees), D McAleese; R Murray (0-3), G McGovern, C O’Hanlon (0-1 free).
Subs: R Wells for Burns (h-t), C Hamill for Monan (49), C Martin for Brown (60).
Referee: M Deegan (Laois).