Limerick win three games in a row as they shock Dublin

Dublin 1-15 Limerick 1-21
Limerick burst the Dublin bubble at Croke Park with a late surge and a classy nine-point haul from Declan Hannon as they made it three NHL Division 1B wins on the trot.

The Dubs led until ht 56th minute, but the dismissal of attacker Paul Ryan left them with a battle on their hands, one which they lost to a resurgent Treaty side.

Graeme Mulcahy banged in a goal and from there to the finish, there was no way the Limerick side was going to lose this one.

Dublin dominated the opening 15 minutes, and created three goal chances, but missed all three and shot a rash of wides, while Limerick full back Richie McCarthy made a couple of crucial interventions.

Joey Boland fired a shot wide, while Conor McCormack sent an angled effort just past the far post, before David O’Callaghan brought an excellent save from Nicky Quaid.

Anthony Daly’s men managed just two points in that period, Boland and Paul Ryan hitting the target.

When goalkeeper Alan Nolan thumped over a free from 100 metres, the home side led by four.

But Limerick began to move with more conviction after a slow start, and Nolan had to pull off a smart save to keep out a Shane Dowling effort.

Kevin Downes slotted over a point, but Dublin reacted, and points from Danny Sutcliffe and John McCaffrey pushed them six clear.

But the final six minuets of the half witnessed a remarkable Treaty revival, five quality points on the trot reining in their opponents in double quick time.

Declan Hannon converted a couple of frees and there were inspiring scores from Kevin Downes and Paul Browne as they trimmed back the deficit to a single point, 0-8 to 0-7 at the break.

Browne as they trimmed back the deficit to a single point, 0-8 to 0-7 at the break.

Conal Keaney became the sixth Dublin attacker to score, but they couldn’t shake the Limerick men, as Graeme Mulcahy responded at the other end.

That was until the Leinster side did make a vital breakthrough with a 39th minute goal, when Conor McCormack’s shot beat Quaid. McCarthy made a heroic effort to keep it out, but an umpire adjudged the ball to have crossed the line before his last gasp clearance.

The game’s turning point came in the 50th minute when Dublin corner forward Ryan received a straight red card.

Limerick had already trimmed back the deficit to two points, but they hit the front fro the first time six minutes later when Mulcahy crashed home a goal.

The superb Hannon continued to hit the target with remarkable accuracy and consistency from frees and play, and Downes and Browne also chipped in with points.

Dublin couldn’t find a way to turn the tide, although they did pull back scores through Nolan, Boland and Sutcliffe.

McCarthy was superb at the back for a Limerick side that finished with confidence and reached out for victory with a ninth point from Hannon.

Dublin: A Nolan (0-2, 2f) P Schutte, R Trainor, M Carton, L Rushe, S Lambert, J Boland (0-3), K Byrne, C Keaney (0-1), J McCaffrey (0-1), D Sutcliffe (0-2), P Ryan (0-3, 1f), C McCormack (1-1), D O’Callaghan (0-1).

Subs: J Doughan for Schutte (46), S Durkin for Byrne (49), D Treacy for McCaffrey (57), E Dillon for O’Callaghan (60), S McGrath for McCormack (69)

Limerick: N Quaid, S Walsh, R McCarthy, T Condon, P O’Brien (0-1), W McNamara, G O’Mahony, P Browne (0-2), J Ryan, D Hannon (0-9, 5f), S Hickey, D Breen, K Downes (0-4), S Dowling, G Mulcahy (1-3).

Subs: N Moran (0-2) for Dowling (h-t), C Allis for Hickey (68), S Tobin for Mulcahy (70), C King for Ryan (71)

Referee: J Owens (Wexford).

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