An Adam Cantwell hat-trick decorated fuelled Rochestown’s march to the Corn Uí Mhuirí (Munster Post-Primary Schools Senior Football Championship) semi-finals on the Páirc Uí Chaoimh 4G pitch yesterday.
The midfielder tucked away a well-taken goal, sandwiched by a couple of expertly-struck penalties, as Rochestown set up a meeting with tournament the favourites St Brendan’s of Killarney.
Cantwell completed his hat-trick in the 83rd minute of an epic contest, which swung one way and then the next, before time finally caught up with a gallant Clonakilty side, minus who were without Cork minor midfielder Jack Lawton due to a hamstring injury.
Rochestown looked to be hanging on for victory until Padraic Cullinane levelled matters with a point into the wind, five minutes into injury time at the end of normal time.
The West Cork school had earlier led 1-6 to 0-5 approaching the end of the first half, following a fine Darragh Holland goal, but their opponents finished strongly.
Cantwell converted his first penalty after a foot block on Aaron Sheehy to reduce the margin to 1-6 to 1-4 at the break.
Cantwell grabbed his second goal after 34 minutes as Rochestown swept 2-7 to 1-7 in front entering the closing quarter.
But, they couldn’t score again, missing opportunities to make the game safe, and Clonakilty punished them, 2-7 to 1-10, forcing extra time.
Substitute Harry Andrews finished well for Rochestown’s third goal in the second minute, but there was still only a point between the sides, 3-8 to 1-12, heading into the second period of extra time.
Three quickfire points, including two from Mark Harrington, nudged Rochestown four in front, only for Adam Harte to hit a screamer for Clon’s second goal after 76 minutes.
The influential Alan O’Hare was pulled down for the second penalty, Cantwell scoring confidently, to finally break Clon’s resistance.
Scorers for Rochestown: A Cantwell 3-0, 2 pens, H Andrews 1-0, A Sheehy 0-4, 1f, A O’Hare 0-3, 2f, M Harrington 0-2, A Connolly and R Timon 0-1 each
Scorers for Clonakilty CC: R O’Donovan 0-5, 2f, D Harte 1-1, D Holland 1-0, P Cullinane 0-3, 2f, JP Eady 0-2, A McSweeney and A Hunt 0-1 each
ST FRANCIS COLLEGE: C O’Leary (Douglas); M Harrington (Nemo Rangers), B McCarthy (Douglas), S Cummins (Cobh); P O’Halloran (Ballygarvan), N O’Connell (Cobh), S Andrews (Shamrocks), captain; A Cantwell (Douglas), S Aherne (do); S Fenton (Ballygarvan), A Connolly (St Michael’s), A O’Hare (Douglas); A Sheehy (do), S Harrington (Passage), R O’Halloran (Ballygarvan).
Subs: H Andrews (Shamrocks) for O’Halloran and C Donlon (Douglas) for S Harrington 60+2, R Timon (Nemo Rangers) for Connolly (extra-time), S Brady (Ballygarvan) for S Andrews injured 65, S Harrington for Fenton injured 79
CLONAKILTY CC: C O’Donovan (Owen Gaels); C Dineen (Ibane Gaels), D Peet (Clonakilty), F Walsh (Ibane Gaels); D Holland (do), A Guinevan (do), D Harte (Owen Gaels); B White (Clonakilty), captain, J O’Regan (Carbery Rangers); S Walsh (Ibane Gaels), R O’Donovan (do), P Cullinane (Owen Gaels); C Cullinane (do), JP Eady (Carbery Rangers), A McSweeney (Ibane Gaels).
Subs: C Daly (Clonakilty) for McSweeney half-time, A Hunt (Clonakilty) for O’Regan 45, J Lynam (Owen Gaels) for White 51, White for C Cullinane 60, R O’Brien (Owen Gaels) for Dineen 64
Referee: J Hayes (Limerick).