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Offaly lose out to Dublin in U17 Hurling Championship

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Dublin 1-20

Offaly 0-15

The young hurlers from Offaly's U17 squad lost out in an entertaining U17 Leinster Special Under 17 Hurling Competition Round 2 clash as the Dubs pulled away in the second half to secure the eight-point victory at Parnell Park.

Offaly were playing catch up from the early stages onwards as Dublin raced into a 0-04 to 0-2 lead inside 15 minutes, but the young Faithful charges battled back, leaving the teams level at 0-05 apiece on the 21-minute mark.

Despite a Dublin goal soon after, Offaly stayed in touch as their inside forward line mustered a couple of scores. It was 1-07 to 0-08 entering the 30th minute, and the teams traded points once more before the half-time whistle sounded.

Dublin ran in 1-08 to 0-09 leaders at the break but Offaly came out with their tails up for the second period. They hunted down the deficit and were within one point on the 39-minute mark at 1-10 to 0-12, and before the 45-minute mark had arrived, they had found the equaliser.

The next ten minutes would be the deciding factor as the Dubs rallied in a big way, securing six scores without reply before the 54th minute, racing clear into a 1-16 to 0-13 lead. Offaly were clearly rattled but they hit back with a point, only for Dublin to restore the six point lead once more with 57 minutes gone.

Offaly could only manage one more point before the end as their opponents tagged on three more for good measure, running out eight-point victors on a final scoreline of 1-20 to 0-15. The teams were well matched for 50 minutes, but Dublin showed themselves to be a free-scoring outfit for key spells and that ability to split the posts from all areas of the field proved the crucial factor.

Offaly Team: Stephen Loughnane, Sean Beatty, Cathal O'Meara, Darragh Maher, Pauric Cantwell, Conor Butler, Barry Cleary, Kevin McDermott, Mark O'Brien, Cathal Brady, Cathal Kiely, Luke O'Connor, Brian Duignan, Brian Mullen, Cillian Sampson.

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