Goals from Nathan Lynch, Joey Rushe and Gerard Quaid was enough to earn the Shannonsiders the three points at the expense of a spirited Cork City side, who snatched a late consolation through Christopher O’Connor.
This was the second meeting between the two sets of youngsters in just six days as they played out a goalless draw in Limerick the previous Sunday afternoon.
And this match looked like it will follow a similar path as both sides struggled to find their rhythm in an attacking sense in the first half.
The visitors created the game’s first genuine goal-scoring opportunity after eight minutes but Gerard Quaid could only fire Nathan Lynch’s clever pullback straight at City goalkeeper Diarmuid Byrne.
Limerick again went close to edging in front midway through the opening period but Filip Mostowy’s effort from distance deflected kindly into the arms of the grateful Cork shot-stopper.
But the group leaders weren’t to be denied for too much longer as they finally grabbed the goal that their performance merited shortly before the interval.
Gerard Quaid’s clever pass over the top of the City rear-guard sent Nathan Lynch through on goal.
The powerful striker shrugged off the challenges of his two markers before calmly slotting the ball past the advancing keeper and into the net.
Limerick started the second half in a similar manner to how they ended the first as they quickly doubled their lead thanks to a stunning strike from Joey Rushe.
The left-back secured possession outside the City penalty area before unleashing an incredible shot that flew into the far top left corner via the post.
— Andrew Horgan (@AndrewHorgan) September 23, 2017
The Market’s field club all but sealed the three points that sees them remain just one point ahead of second-placed Wexford when they added a third just past the hour mark.
Substitute Ethan O’Sullivan’s neat pass found Wassiou Ayawe in space twenty yards from the Cork goal.
The midfielder instantly rolled the ball into the path of the onrushing Josh Quinlivan and his powerful attempt beat the keeper with the aid of a deflection.
To their credit, City failed to let their heads drop and they were rewarded for their approach in injury time as they scored a consolation through Christopher O’Connor, who tucked home from a tight angle after expertly rounding the goalkeeper.
CORK CITY: Diarmuid Byrne, Micheal Mullins, Robert Walsh, Jack Anthony, Sean Cummins, Ethan Giltinan, Matthew Murphy, Oran Crowe, Christopher O’Connor, Ramon Gaspar, Keelan Crowley.
Subs: Dylan O’Halloran, Darragh Burke, Fintan Cody, Conor Hughes, Elyas Eshaji and Alan Nagle.
LIMERICK: James Griffin, Ronan Geary, Joey Rushe, Jack Prendergast, Scott Kirwan, Adam Fitzpatrick, Wassiou Ayawe, Filip Mostowy, Gerard Quaid, Josh Quinlivan, Nathan Lynch.
Subs: Adam Brennan, Oisin Enright, Andri Haxhiaj, Dean McNamara, Riain O’Connell, Ethan O’Sullivan, Michael Molloy, Sean Harrison
Referee: Timmy Kelleher.