Dermot Hughes Cars U-20 FC Division One Final
St. Brigid’s 2-10 Pádraig Pearses 2-7
In a year when Roscommon reached the All-Ireland final at this grade, expectations were that the U-20 club championship was always going to be strong, and sure enough we had a superb final in Kiltoom last Friday night between two excellent teams.
In a game played in perfect conditions, Brigid’s were just about the better side, but they had work hard all the way to win the title.
Pearses started brightly and when Conor Lohan blasted home on the rebound after Eoin McManus’s shot was saved by Evan Gallagher in the 16th minute, they led by 1-3 to 0-2.
But after the first water break, Conor Hand finished expertly for Brigid’s after a great pass from Eoghan Derwin, and it was nip and tuck for the remainder of the game. Brigid’s danger man, Ben O’Carroll, was subdued by an impressive Pearses rearguard and they were equally sharp in attack. There was only a point between the teams at half-time: Pádraig Pearses 1-5 St. Brigid’s 1-4.
The sides were level at 1-6 apiece by the 37th minute before O’Carroll nudged Brigid’s ahead with a trademark point in the 39th minute, and a minute later they were four ahead when Brian O’Hara-Duggan finished at the second attempt after his first shot was saved by James Costello.
Pearses fought back once again. Eoin Colleran pointed from an excellent ‘mark’ and Declan Kelly drilled home a cracking goal to level the scores in the 46th minute.
But the final quarter belonged to Brigid’s. Driven on by the outstanding Sean Trundle, they attacked the Pearses goal and points from Shane Cunnane (a free), Conor Hand, and sub Daniel Keenan was enough to see them over the line.
Outstanding for Brigid’s on the night were Sean Trundle at full-back, Ronan Doyle, Shane Cunnane, Conor Hand and Ben O’Carroll while for a very well organised and well coached Pearses outfit, Adam Harley, Conor Lohan, Declan Kenny, and Jack Tumulty were most prominent.
St. Brigid’s: Evan Gallagher; Ciaran Quinn, Sean Trundle (0-1), Michael Sugrue; Ronan Doyle, Luke Griselain (0-1), Paddy Higgins; Brian O’Hara-Duggan (1-0), Shane Cunnane (0-1, free); Ruairi Fallon, Conor Hand (1-1), Brian Monaghan; Bobby Nugent (0-2, 1 mark), Ben O’Carroll (0-3, 1 free), Eoghan Derwin. Subs: Brian Nestor for Monaghan (25), Daniel Meeley for Quinn (35), Daniel Keenan (0-1) for Derwin (46).
Pádraig Pearses: James Costello; Luke Walsh, Adam Harley, John Moore; Daniel Farrell (0-1), Conor Lohan (1-0), Conor Ryan; Caelim Keogh, Jack Downey; Richard Browne, Eoin McManus, Declan Kenny (1-0); Adam McGreal (0-2, 1 mark), Eoin Colleran (0-3, 2 frees 1 mark), Jack Tumulty (0-1). Subs: Jason Cunningham for Moore (45), Thomas Carey for Browne (51), Ronan Finn for McManus (55), Darragh Finn for Ryan (62).
Referee: Marty Parker
Man of the Match: Sean Trundle (St. Brigid’s)
*In the U-20 Football Championship Division Two Final, Strokestown were the winners over St. Dominic’s on a scoreline of 1-8 to 1-6 in Johnstown on Friday night last.