Five-star St Galls romp to U-21 success

U-21 B Football Championship final

St Galls 5-22-0-09 Lámh Dhearg

From Kevin Herron at Coláiste Feirste

St Galls ran out comfortable winners in a one sided U-21 B final at Colásite Feirste this morning after defeating Lámh Dhearg 5-22-0-09.

Both sides progressed through difficult semi-finals last weekend – St Galls accounting for Aghgallon by a goal and Lámh Dhearg eventually putting Aldergrove away in the second last-four clash.

The Milltown Row side wasted no time in their pursuit of dominance and led through Niall Burn’s early point. John McCaffrey was well placed to double his side’s advantage after some lovely football and on five minutes the Galls had the game’s opening goal.

Marc McKenna bore down on the Lámh Dhearg goal and opted for a pop across to the back post where Niall Burns was waiting to apply the finish and make it 1-02-0-00.

St Galls increased their lead through points from Caolan Chada and Burns before Lámh Dhearg responded through their talisman in full-forward John Boyd.

Mark Finnegan top scored for his side in last weekend’s victory over Aldergrove and tapped over a straightforward free to ensure that his side had woken from their early slumber.

Burns responded from the same scenario with Conn Doherty splitting the posts from play. Mark Finnegan converted his second free of the afternoon but at the midway point in proceedings his side were 1-06-0-03 in arrears.

Three further points from McKenna, McCaffrey and Burns stretched St Gall’s advantage further- with their runners in attack causing the Lámhs considerable problems.

With 19 minutes on the clock it was game set and match for the Milltown side as Burns claimed a kick-out from Daniel Hartley and burst forward, before playing a one-two with Conn Doherty who rifled to the net to make it 2-09-0-03.

Lámh Dhearg were in big trouble but registered the next two scores through Jack Summersgill and Declan Smith.

They should also have netted after Ross Murray cut inside and unleashed a low shot that was blocked in the area, a scramble ensued but Declan Smith saw his close range shot turned off the line and St Galls keeper Niall McCurdy was able to breathe a huge sigh of relief.

Niall Burns increased his personal tally and back to back McKenna points had their side in almost complete control.

A third Mark Finnegan free had ensured his side were just about hanging in with Burns scoring his sixth point of the half to give St Galls a healthy 2-13-0-06 lead at the interval.

St Galls picked up where they left off at the break as Niall Burns popped the ball over and substitute Kevin Bradley got in on the act.

Mark Finnegan replied for Lámh Dhearg and scores were then at a premium for a ten minute period in the aftermath.

Lámh Dhearg were unable to engineer a goal that would have given them some confidence as John Boyd’s shot was deflected and smothered by McCurdy.

Eventually St Galls ended the scoreless period through a Niall Burns free 10 minutes from time and sixty seconds later they had their third goal of the afternoon.

Kevin Bradley popped the ball into the path of fellow substitute Callum Derby who picked his spot low in the net to make it 3-16-0-07.

Conn Doherty added a further point and back to back Lorcan O’Ciarnan points opened the deficit further.

With four minutes remaining Callum Derby outmuscled goalkeeper Daniel Hartley and steered the ball to the empty net to claim his second goal in the space of five minutes.

Jack Summersgill and Mark Finnegan (free) ended their sides scoring from the afternoon in response to Derby’s strike.

But St Galls emphatically closed out proceedings on the front foot ; O’Ciarnan added his side’s fifth goal with a bullet of a strike, in-between points from Kevin Bradley, Mark McKenna and Callum Derby as the Milltown side received the B championship from county chairman Ciaran McCavana.

St. Gall’s: N McCurdy, E McCurdy, R Gilligan, R Mallon, C Chada (0-01), E McCabe, J McCaffrey (0-02), C Murray, T Bunting, D Murray, M McKenna (0-04), L McIllroy, N Burns (1-08, 0-02f), C Doherty (1-02), M Donnelly. Subs: O McIlhatton for C Chada (22); K Bradley (0-02) for L McIllroy (HT); C Ferguson for R Mallon (HT); C Derby (2-01) for C Murray (32); L O’Ciarnan (1-02) for N Burns (47); D Widsom for D Murray (50).

Lámh Dhearg: D Hartley, S McCullough, R Fegan, A Ferris, J Summersgill (0-02), D Smith, R Murray, E Matassa, D Dunne, E Mervyn, M Finnegan (0-05f), C Keating, JJ Hawkins, J Boyd (0-01), A Cunningham. Subs: D Larkin for A Ferris (16); B Cunningham for A Cunningham (HT); T Nelson for C Keating (HT); M Pettigrew for JJ Hawkins (43).

Referee: Jarleth O’Donnell (Glenravel)

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