Roy Henley gave Kilkenny/N.J. a hint of what they were in for with a goal less than a minute from referee Dermot Flynn’s throw in. Henley would shake the twines twice more, notching the hat trick to which he added four points.
Kevin Corbett did his best to keep the combo’s hopes afloat, scoring 0-6 in the first half, most from long range. Waterford were also doing their best to keep things interesting, firing five consecutive wides early in the first half. Eventually, though, the Dieces settled down and Henley’s second goal was a big blow to the Jersey Cat’s hopes.
Waterford played in the newly formed B division this season, but the higher level of competition didn’t seem to prepare Kilkenny/N.J. terribly well for the rigors of playoff action as Waterford were always the better side.
The second half saw Waterford run out to an unassailable lead with Henley again striking the big blow. His third goal made it 3-11 to 0-6. The combo had yet to score in the second half. They finally got a point from midfielder Kevin McKay, who worked hard and played well in a losing cause.
Late goals from Gerry Cottrell and Ronan Murphy served only to make the score board more palatable from the combo viewpoint. With this win Waterford advance to next Sunday’s semifinal, where they will face a much sterner test when they challenge last year’s runner-up, Connecticut.
Man of the Match: Ray Henley
Waterford: Ian Duggan, Colin Ruth, Ray Duggan, Tomas Maher, Victor O’Shea, Tony O’Brien, Jamie Duggan (0-1), Nick Power (0-1), Noel Lonegran (0-3), Aiden Sweeney (0-1), Joe Walsh (0-1), Roy Henley (3-4), Sean Daly (0-5).
Kilkenny/N.J.: Tony Spillane, Noel Doherty, Tom Bermingham, Declan Hogan, Ronan Sheedy, Joe Coughlan, Kevin McKay (0-1), Kevin Corbett (0-6, 2 frees), Ronan Murphy (1-0), Shane Grace, Mike Dennis, Gerry Cottrell (1-0), John Mangan.