Free scoring Meath earn deserved Final shot

Meath…0-24

Sligo…0-18

Throughout what has been a very successful season for Seoirse Bulfin’s Meath senior hurlers so far, one of the recurring themes often referenced by yours truly has been their continued ability to amass big tallies of scores. Of course there have been other factors in their fine form but it seems to be very much a case of ‘No matter what you score, we’ll outscore you’. A dangerous manifesto to pin your hopes on but definitely better than being a conservative bore.

As is generally the case, the classy Jack Regan was shooter-in-chief for the green and gold. Driving over his first from the halfway line. Thereafter, with Eamonn Og O’Donnchadh and Nicky Potterton also lively in attack, they opened up a lead of a 0-06 to 0-03.

Perhaps luckily for Meath, Sligo were almost totally dependent on centre forward Andrew Kilcullen for scores. That said, even when Meath did expand the gap out to 0-11 to 0-06, the aforementioned again responded with a salvo to narrow the gap to one.

Right on cue though, Bulfin’s boys went up a gear or two and scores from Pa Ryan (two) and a Regan free sent the Leinster side for refreshments with a 0-14 to 0-10 cushion.

When Sligo outscored the previous Ring Cup winners by five points to three in the third quarter (Regan x2 and Martin Healy) to get back within two points again, a lot of ensembles would have thrown an error code.

But there appears to be something different about this Meath group. Well, it’s actually not new, it’s something which was perennially part of our DNA but seemed to go dull for a while. In some sections at least.

Anyway, again, once they sensed danger afoot, Meath dug another few inches deeper. Substitute Adam Gannon then pointed and set up raiding wing back Niall McLarnon. The Ratoath No. 5 then sent over another superb score before James Kelly got in on the act to close the scoring.

MEATH – C. Ennis; M. Burke, S. Brennan, B. McKeon; N. McLarnon (0-2), S. Geraghty, S. Ennis; P. Ryan (0-2), M. Healy (0-2); P. O’Hanrahan, J. Regan (0-10), J. Kelly (0-1); J. Toher, E. Og O’Donnchadh (0-4), N. Potterton (0-2).

SUBS – M. O’Sullivan for Ryan, A. Gannon (0-1) for O’Hanrahan, J. Murray for Ryan, S. Quigley for O’Donnchadh, D. Murtagh for Healy.

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