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Sullivan and Wallace are set for Burney Cup showdown

By Graham Hamilton

Burney Cup organisers are hoping to encourage a bigger than usual crowd for this season's final by scheduling it immediately after next Thursday's World League quarter-finals at Stormont's Playball.

And the decider will see Sullivan Upper take on Wallace High after last season's winners Banbridge Academy were knocked out in yesterday's semi-finals, which were staged at Lisnagarvey.

The hope is that many attending the World League series may stay on to see the next generation of young players, with the Burney final scheduled for a 7pm start after the final game of the day.

However, it's likely that it will deny many pupils the chance of getting to the game outside of school hours.

It was Fergus Gibson who finally put to rest Sullivan's Burney bogey by wreaking revenge on Banbridge - he scored the only goal of the first semi to erase memories of three Burney final defeats to Bann in the last 12 years.

But it took extra-time and then a penalty stroke shoot-out before Wallace finally got the better of Cookstown High.

First that Sullivan win and it was Gibson who scored the crucial goal in the 43rd minute from a penalty corner.

He had other chances too, particularly from more set-pieces, but Academy keeper Luke Roleston was in fine form again.

Academy's downfall ended up being their penalty corners - they racked up 12 but converted none.

Sullivan's other chances came from Calum Carson and Chris Mitchell while Banbridge's Jake Rowe and Kyle Marshall couldn't find a way through the solid defence and keeper Tom McCord.

Goals were aplenty in the second semi, with Andrew O'Hare's penalty corner giving Wallace an early lead only for Robert Turkington and then a Michael Kerr penalty corner to turn things round for Cookstown.

William Carey and Kerr swapped goals to leave it 3-2 to Cookstown at the break but things turned again when O'Hare put away another penalty corner for Wallace and Ben Nelson scored on the reverse.

However, Kerr completed his hat-trick from another penalty corner and so it was on to extra-time and then a shoot-out.

Wallace had conversions from Scott McCabe, Jordan Taggart, Andrew O'Hare, Jacob Herman and Craig Getty while Cookstown managed one fewer, through Cole Chambers, Michael Kerr, Jack Haycock and Troy Chambers.

Belfast Telegraph

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