November 7, 2018

Naas bridged a 32 year gap to win their second U21 Football Championship with a narrow one point win over Moorefield. In a closely contested game defences dominated and scores were few and far between. Naas led 0 – 4 to 0 – 2 at the interval.

 A well worked Naas move at the start of the second half ended up in a John Joyce point and left three between them.  With eight minutes to go there were still three points between them Naas leading 0 – 7 to 0 – 4. Moorefield staged a late rally with two points from frees but the Naas defence stood firm and they could not get the equaliser.

Mark Murray opened the scoring for Moorefield in the fifth minute. Naas equalised four minutes later with a Barry Murphy point. The sides then traded points from Darragh Merriman (Naas) and Luke Doran (Moorefield). A Brian Byrne “45” and a Darragh Merriman free put Naas in a commanding position at the interval leading 0 – 4 to 0 – 2.

At the start of the second half a well-rehearsed move put John Joyce through for a Naas point. Moorefield reduced the arrears to a point with two Murray frees. Points from Darragh Merriman and Brian Byrne restored the three point cushion with eight minutes left. Moorefield fought hard in the remaining minutes but two Murray frees was their only reward.

Naas; Luke Mullins, Davy Shaw, Shane Gibbons, Conor McCarthy, Johnny Heavey, Rory McDermott, Paul McDermott, Eoghan Bateman, James Burke, Barry Murphy(0 – 1), John Joyce(0 – 1), Dean McHolmes, Aidan Begley, Brian Byrne(0 – 2), Darragh Merriman(0 – 3).

Moorefield: Adam Bingham, Colin Barrett, Mark Dempsey, Sean Dempsey, Michael Buckley, Sean Healy, Ryan Houlihan, Aaron Masterson, Jamie Connolly, Luke Doran (0 – 1), Tom Connolly, Ian Meehan, Mark Murray (0 – 5), Conor McLoughlin, Liam McDermott.

Referee: Liam Herbert.