Loughmore-Castleiney’s bid for Munster glory ended in disappointment at Semple Stdium when they were pipped by Limerick visitors Na Piarsaigh in the provincial club senior hurling quarter final, losing 3-17 to 2-18.
Despite the defeat, it was an heroic performance from the Tipperary champions who were reduced to fourteen men after just three minutes and thirteen soon after the start of the second half.
But in typical Loughmore fashion, they battled to the end only to lose in the dying seconds.
Following the dismissal of fullback Derek Bourke, they trailed 0-6 to 0-4 playing with the breeze but superp play saw them turn the game around to lead 1-11 to 0-8 at the break, the goal from Liam McGrath.
The lead stretched to ten early in the second half with the second goal from Cian Hennessey.
However the loss of Willie Eviston to a red card stretched Loughmore even further and the Limerick men took advantage.
They were later reduced to fourteen themselves but only trailed by a point, 2-16 to 2-15 with eight minutes left.
Noel McGrath pointed a great free from an acute angle. Four minutes later Kevin Downes pointed for Na Piarsaigh and then tragedy for Loughmore in the 59th minute as David Dempsey was on hand to flash the rebound of Kevin Ryan’s shot past a helpless Shane Nolan for a two points lead for the Limerick men.
Could Loughmore pull it out of the fire? Noel McGrath was off target with a long-range free but at the beginning of injury time he pointed a free and the Mid side were still on the attack when Na Piarsiagh were awarded a free inside their own half which Shane Dowling sent all the way between the posts from almost 100 metres to seal their win.