Senior hurlers narrowly lose out to UCD

DCU’s Fitzgibbon team lost their second league game of the season against Dublin rivals UCD. The game finished 1-15 to 1-10 in favour of the Southsiders, in what was a closely fought contest.

The game started with both sides exchanging scores in the opening 15 minutes of play, meaning the scoreline read three points each with DCU’s scores coming from the hurl of Padraig Breheny. But the game then began to open up in favour of UCD. The Belfield university looked threatening under the high ball, and this came to fruition after 20 minutes when a high ball into the UCD full-forward line caught the DCU back line unawares, resulting in the game’s first goal.

UCD pushed on from there with three more unanswered points before DCU finally came up with a reply, this time from the hurl of Richie Hogan. UCD, however, pushed on again for the final minutes of the half and added more points to their tally to leave the scoreline at half-time reading 0-4 to 1-7 in favour of the visitors.

DCU started the second half brightly and outscored their Dublin rivals 0-3 to 0-1 in the opening minutes. The home side could have drawn level after 45 minutes when they cut through the UCD defence only to force an impressive save from the visiting net-minder.

UCD then managed to score a further two points to establish a six-point lead. There was hope for DCU, however, after a shot by wingback Peter Gill from the UCD 45-metre line forced a blunder from the goalkeeper and the ball hit the back of the net.

The goal shook UCD, and DCU got a further two points to bring down the deficit to a point, but that was as close as they came. A flurry of points in the final minutes from the visitors added a gloss to a scoreline which in reality was a very close encounter.

In the end it was UCD’s aerial prowess that prevailed in what was a hard-fought battle. It was a disappointing outcome for DCU, but there were many positives.

While DCU may have lacked in aerial ability, it was their ability to win the ‘dirty ball’ that was their main attribute.

The scoring threat posed by Hogan and Breheny, who together contributed 0-9 of DCU’s 1-10, is something to look forward to. Even more impressive about the partnership was that both players were double-marked from the start.

The senior hurlers’ next match is an away game against St. Pats in the third round of the league, which will take place on November 5th.

Garrett Lavin

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