Two goals in the opening ten minutes set Loughmore-Castleiney up for victory over holders Arravale Rovers in a lively and high quality county under 21 A football final at Holycross on Sunday last, winning 3-11 to 1-11
Victory rests rightly where it belongs and it was a sweet one for the Mid champions who were beaten by Arravale in last year’s final and who also lost out to the Tipp town lads in the semi-final a year previously.
But it was those two goals which were to ultimately decide the issue and they left Arravale Rovers, who subsequently gave as good as they got, chasing the game. They were not helped by some slack shooting either, and their pursuit of goals to bridge the gap in the closing period, when points were available, but overall, they can not quibble with the result.
Loughmore-Castleiney delight with the victory was obvious and justified. After the disappointments of the two previous years, they will feel this was overdue, and all the more welcome for that. They have a wealth of young talent coming along, ably led by John, Liam and Aidan McGrath, Liam Treacy, Willie Eviston, Eamon Connolly, and John Ryan, all of whom had big games.
Arravale Rovers will be disappointed at their slow start which cost them the game. Had they been quicker off the blocks, who knows what might have happened. They too had great quality in their team, Gerard Mulhair, Sean O’Meara, Donough Leahy, Niall Donovan (surprisingly withdrawn), James Hogan and the Lowrys, Ciaran and Brian being particularly prominent.
Loughmore-Castleiney – Richard Maher; Lorcan Egan, Willie Eviston, Joseph Hennessy; John Ryan, Tomas McGrath, Henry Maher; John McGrath (0-1), Joe Nyland; Eamon Connolly (1-1), Liam Treacy (0-2), Brian McGrath; Thomas Maher, Aidan McGrath (1-2), Liam McGrath (1-5); Sub Padraig Egan for Egan;
Arravale Rovers – Brian Kissane; Peter Mulhair, Gary O’Callaghan, Killian Ryan; Shane Leahy, Gerard Mulhair (0-1), Cathal Donovan; Sean O’Meara, Donagh Leahy (0-2); David Heffernan (0-1), Niall Donovan, Tony Byrnes; Ciaran Lowry, James Hogan (0-2), Brian Lowry (1-5); Subs- Diarmuid O’Donnell for N Donovan; Johnny Lowry for Heffernan;
Referee - Derek O’Mahoney, Ardfinnan.