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O'Hare to the four ahead of Wallace-Sullivan final

By Graham Hamilton

Wallace High and Sullivan Upper will meet in next week's McCullough Cup decider following their decisive semi-final successes at Lisnagarvey yesterday afternoon.

It's Wallace's third time on the trot to reach the final and there was no question about their talisman - striker Andrew O'Hare who bagged four of their goals in a 6-3 win over holders Banbridge Academy.

Sullivan, though, have never won the McCullough trophy - now in its 55th year - but two second half goals from John Matchett earned them a 4-1 win over Friends School.

Now their target is to go one better than their previous four final appearances which ended in defeat, although they know it won't be easy against a Wallace team buoyed by the recent coaching from three world class international stars during their mid-term break.

O'Hare, for example, was coached by Argentine drag-flick penalty corner exponent Gonzalo Peillat ... and it took the Wallace forward just 11 minutes to show he had been taught well as he converted such an award.

Ben Nelson finished off another Wallace move to put them two ahead but Banbridge's Jake Rowe kept his side in the hunt by placing his penalty corner high into the roof of the net five minutes into the second half.

But then O'Hare struck twice more in a three-minute spell - the first tucked under keeper Luke Roleston and the second from a Matthew Nelson cross - to complete his hat-trick.

Kyle Marshall's penalty corner pulled one back for the Academy, but O'Hare got his fourth of the game from a penalty stroke before Jacob Hermon made it six by finishing off a penalty corner.

Marshall completed the scoring for Bann but it was too late for a revival.

Sullivan and Friends were the second semi-final on and once again it was a decisive result.

Man of the match Adam McAllister put the Holywood school ahead after 13 minutes and then Callum Robson and McAllister combined to set up Matthew Crookshanks for the second ten minutes from the interval.

Niall Magee pulled one back to give Friends some hope, but then two goals in a three-minute spell from John Matchett put the result out of their reach.

Matchett got his first from a penalty corner variation and his second was a superb shot on the reverse from a tight angle.

The final is scheduled for next Wednesday (December 9 - 2pm) at Lisnagarvey.

IRELAND's men crashed to a 3-0 defeat to Spain in the second of three international games being staged in Barcelona during their warm-weather training camp.

It wasn't so much warm but wet and the saturated pitch too often led to mistakes as the ball often fell short of its intended target due to puddles.

Lleonart put the hosts ahead in the first half with a penalty corner conversion, although Johnny Bruton, winning his 50th cap, Gareth Watkins and Conor Harte all came close.

The Spanish closed out the game with second half goals from Bach and Alegre.

Belfast Telegraph


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