Missing players are cause for concern as hurlers fall to Maynooth

DCU: 3-09
Maynooth University: 1-18

Senior Hurling League Division One

November 6th, 2015

DCU senior hurling manager Nick Weir was left cursing the “club and inter-county” scene as his side were overcome by a strong Maynooth University side.

An ever-changing lineup for DCU has led to an unsettled squad who have now lost each of their opening four games.

They made a massive ten changes to the side that was beaten by University College Dublin two weeks ago and it showed.

They played like a team that were uncomfortable with each other in the first half. Poor passing and aimless high balls were a feature of DCU’s attacking play while Maynooth took their scores with ease.

Disaster struck for the home side after eight minutes when a dropping ball was mishandled by the DCU backline allowing Maynooth’s Paul Kinsella to stroke the ball into the net.

Kinsella played a starring role as Maynooth racked up 1-6 to a solitary point after twenty minutes.

DCU pulled themselves back into the game with four scores in a row but knew they were lucky to be only six points down at half-time.

With their manager’s words still ringing in their ears, it was DCU who struck first with full-forward Conor Shirren getting his first score as his shot rattled the back of the Maynooth net.

Once the Northsiders found their scoring touch, they were hard to stop. Goalkeeper Bob Fitzgerald was caught out by a ball dropping short and fumbled the ball over his own goal line to put DCU ahead for the first time in the game.

DCU ‘keeper Darren Renehan came in for Barry Cushen and kept himself busy with two fine saves before saving a penalty after a foul on Maynooth’s Conor Fenton.

As the game wound down, DCU’s lack of available replacements became apparent as Maynooth’s freshers began to breeze past half tackles.

Even a third DCU goal couldn’t inspire a late comeback as Maynooth took their chances and kept their opponents at arm’s length.

Afterwards, Weir spoke of the problem of keeping the squad together. “Every game we’ve played so far this year in the league, we were down ten or twelve lads, compared to last year (when we lost) maybe six.”

He hinted that action would be taken to ensure the team is focused on the task ahead. “I laid it on the line with the boys who were missing there tonight – get back at it next Monday night and start with a clean slate.”

Aidan Delaney

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