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Nolan's last-gasp penalty save secures win for Dublin over Waterford in league thriller

Waterford hit four goals but lost out by two points in Parnell Park.

Alan Nolan denied Stephen Bennett in the finale at Parnell Park.
Alan Nolan denied Stephen Bennett in the finale at Parnell Park.
Image: Ken Sutton/INPHO

Dublin 1-26
Waterford 4-15

Paul Keane reports from Parnell Park

GOALKEEPER ALAN NOLAN emerged as Dublin’s heroic figure at Parnell Park with a last gasp penalty save to secure a thrilling two-point Allianz NHL Division 1B win.

In literally the last action of the game, Nolan got down low to block Stephen Bennett’s penalty attempt, sealing the biggest win of the Mattie Kenny era so far.

It was a sweet save for Nolan who’d earlier been at fault when he failed to deal with a routine miscued free in from Bennett which somehow ended up in the net.

Oisin O’Rorke scored 0-11 in total for Dublin including their last four points as they came from a point down with 70 minutes played to win by that two-point margin.

Former All-Star Danny Sutcliffe was back to his best too, picking off four points during the Round 4 encounter and directing the play in the middle third with real quality.

There were strong performances too from the powerful John Hetherton and Eamonn Dillon while Liam Rushe swooped for Dublin’s only goal.

Darragh O’Connell, wearing number eight but locked in a man marking job on Thomas Ryan, was sent off late on. The Kerry man was initially booked for the foul which led to Waterford being awarded that penalty before referee Fergal Horgan returned to brandish a straight red card.

It was a thrill-a-minute game and Dublin would have kicked themselves if they’d not won having been on top for long spells and performed so assuredly.

They led 0-14 to 3-3 at half-time as Waterford stayed in the game thanks to goals from Stephen and Shane Bennett as well as Ryan.

Dublin added points from O’Rorke and Hetherton after the restart before being outscored by 0-8 to 1-1 in the following 13 minutes to end up back on level terms, 3-11 to 1-17.

They were level three more times late on in a gripping encounter and Waterford moved one clear as they rallied but couldn’t hold on as O’Rorke’s precise free-taking ultimately won the day.

Scorers for Dublin: Oisin O’Rorke 0-11 (0-8f, 0-1 65), Liam Rushe 1-1, Eamonn Dillon 0-4, Danny Sutcliffe 0-4, Chris Crummey 0-2, John Hetherton 0-2, Shane Barrett 0-1, Fergal Whitely 0-1.

Scorers for Waterford: Stephen Bennett 2-7 (1-7f), Shane Bennett 1-2, Thomas Ryan 1-1, Jamie Barron 0-2, Kevin Moran 0-2, Jack Prendergast 0-1.

Dublin

1. Alan Nolan (Naomh Brid)

8. Darragh O’Connell (Cuala)
3. Eoghan O’Donnell (Whitehalle Colmcille)
2. Paddy Smyth (Clontarf)

5. Chris Crummey (Lucan Sarsfields)
6. Sean Moran (Cuala)
7. Shane Barrett (Na Fianna)

4. Daire Gray (Whitehall Colmcille)
9. Riain McBride (St Vincent’s)

24. Caolan Conway (Kilmacud Crokes)
12. Danny Sutcliffe (St Vincent’s)
15. Eamon Dillon (Naomh Fionnbarra)

11. John Hetherton (St Vincent’s)
14. Liam Rushe (St Pat’s, Palmerstown)
19. Oisin O’Rorke (Kilmacud Crokes)

Subs

18. Tomas Connolly (St Vincent’s) for Barrett (49)
20. Sean Treacy (Cuala) for Gray (49)
10. Jake Malone (Cuala) for McBride (53)
17. Fergal Whitely (Kilmacud Crokes) for Treacy (56)
13. Donal Burke (Na Fianna) for Conway (64)

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Waterford

1. Billy Nolan (Roanmore)

2. Shane McNulty (De La Salle)
3. Conor Prunty (Abbeside)
4. Noel Connors (Passage)

5. Callum Lyons (Ballyduff Lower)
6. Austin Gleeson (Mount Sion)
7. Kevin Moran (De La Salle)

8. Jamie Barron (Fourmilewater)
9. Mark O’Brien (Ferrybank)

10. DJ Foran (Portlaw)
11. Stephen Roche (Mount Sion)
12. Jack Prendergast (Lismore)

13. Thomas Ryan (Tallow)
14. Stephen Bennett (Ballysaggart)
15. Shane Bennett (Ballysaggart)

Subs

19. Michael Walsh (Stradbally) for Foran (h/t)
23. Mikey Kearney (Ballyduff Upper) for O’Brien (h/t)
18. Philip Mahony (Ballygunner) for Lyons (53)
20. Jordan Henley (Tallow) for Prunty (58)
24. Pauric Mahony (Ballygunner) for Prendergast (61)

Referee: Fergal Horgan (Tipperary).

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Paul Keane

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