Cork and Limerick claim Waterford Crystal Cup wins

John Conlon, Mary Immaculate College, in action against Thomas O'Brien, left, and Robbie Egan, Limerick. Pic: Sportsfile

Cork and Limerick both claimed victories over college sides in the opening round of the Waterford Crystal Cup today.

At the Mardyke, new Cork captain Pa Cronin skippered his side to a 3-20 to 1-16 victory over UCC, in a game which also doubled up as the inaugural Canon O'Brien Cup meeting between the Leeside teams.

GAA President Liam O'Neill was among the attendance as Jimmy Barry Murphy's charges impressed throughout.

Two early points from Patrick Horgan put Cork in the driving seat in the opening stages, but UCC quickly equalised by the fourth minute.

The opening quarter was extremely tight in nature with Stephen Moylan and Cronin also on target for the Rebels, with the sides level at 0-6 apiece after 18 minutes.

UCC took a two-point lead for the first time after 20 minutes, and held the lead until the 31st minute when a brace of goals saw the Rebels take control by the interval.

Horgan and O'Sullivan both netted for Cork inside 60 seconds, as Cork held a 2-9 to 0-10 lead at the break.

That goal brace provided the difference early on the restart as a point from half-time substitute Rob O'Shea further extended Cork's lead.

However the students bounced back, registering 1-3 in a five-minute spell.

Limerick native Willie Griffin claiming a goal from a free and two points from play, with Seamus Harnedy (0-5) to cut the deficit to two points in the 41st minute on a 2-11 to 1-13 score-line.

However, Cork bounced back with a brace of Cronin points while a 46th minute Horgan goal from a 20-metre free ensured a 3-13 to 1-13 lead.

The sides were well matched in the closing quarter, but Horgan's second goal gave Cork the edge required for victory.

The Rebels will face Waterford IT at a Cork venue next weekend.

A hat-trick of goals, including two from Shane Dowling helped Limerick to a 3-15 to 0-13 win over Mary Immaculate College at Kilmallock.

The teacher training college's debut in this competition wasn't a memorable one as Limerick led this game throughout.

A solid foundation for victory was laid by the hosts in the opening half as they led by 2-8 to 0-5 at the interval.

John Allen's charges took control right from the off when half-forward David Breen crashed the ball past Mary Immaculate goalkeeper Shane Nolan after just 24 seconds.

Limerick moved 1-3 to 0-2 in front by the 15th minute, with Dowling claiming a hat-trick of early points.

Clare's John Conlon helped keep the students in touch, but a 24th minute Dowling goal set the hosts up nicely for a nine-point interval lead.

Five of the Limerick attack were on target in the opening 35 minutes and they again showed no mercy on the restart.

Dowling's completed the Limerick hat-trick 16 minutes after the restart, with his second goal ensuring a 3-12 to 0-10 lead.

The sides shared six points equally in the closing quarter, with Kevin Downes, Niall Moran and substitute Seamus Hickey each claiming a point for the hosts.

Limerick now face reigning champions Tipperary in a last-eight encounter next weekend.

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