Bandon Grammar 2
Banbridge Academy 2
(Bandon win shoot-out 3-1)
SAM Dale went down in All-Ireland Schoolboy Hockey folklore with a breathtaking late goal for Bandon Grammar and then subsequently completed the job in the shoot-out to overcome Banbridge Academy in the final at Wesley.
It ended a 17-year wait for Bandon, harking back to the days of the Harte twins and Jason Lynch, and Dale was relishing the moment after the final whistle.
'We never give up; that’s what we are about!' he said afterwards. 'The perfect team, we have such great desire - late goal in the semis, late goal in the final and that is why this team is so special! We bind together and never give up!'
His side looked set for narrow defeat at the hands of a hugely talented Banbridge but Dale summoned up an outstanding backhand strike that whizzed into the top corner with two minutes left to earn a 2-2 draw in normal time.
And after goalkeeper Harry Forsey kept out three Bann shoot-outs, Dale stepped up to dodge one way and then impudently lob over Conor Part to start the celebrations with a 3-1 success.
It crowned a perfect day for the West Cork side as they edged by King’s Hospital in the semi-final thanks to another Dale goal and one from the superb Mark Collins.
Banbridge had earlier eliminated Midleton College 4-0 in the semis with Charlie Rowe, Cody Large, Tommy Dobson and Adam McKee on the mark.
They carried that momentum into the final with Matthew Stevenson planting a low drag-flick into the bottom corner in the first quarter for a 1-0 advantage which they held into half-time.
Bandon got level when a long reverse-stick pass made it to Justin Lucas a minute after the break but Bann were back ahead quickly, McKee getting his second of the day and, initially, his side looked more likely to net again before Bandon fought back.
They won a series of corners and when Rowe picked up a yellow card, the Munster side sniffed a chance, the big one falling to Dale on the circle’s edge. He still had plenty to do but his strike was true and perfectly executed, leaving Part unable to get enough of his hands to the rising shot.
Forsey gave Bandon the instant initiative in the shoot-out with a stroke save from Rowe, laying the base for the winning
Bandon Grammar: Harry Forsey, Ian Perrott, Trenton Spencer, Josh Hamilton-Foott , Tiarnan Brown, Alan Buttimer, Jamie Horgan, Mark Collins, Callum Mc Court, Sam Dale, Angus Seigne, Justin Lucas, Glen Gash, Conor Hoban, Charlie Gilbert, Gustav Von Der Schulenberg, Ewan Cullinane, Sean Landy
Banbridge Academy: Connor Part, Luke Watt, Aaron Baxter, Seb Best, Ben Walker, Adam McKee, Ben Pollock, Josh Brownlee, Matthew McKee, Tommy Dobson, Charlie Rowe, James Evans, Cody Large, Matthew Spence, Matthew Stevenson, Lukas Moles, Ben Farson, Denver Golbey