St Mary's Capture Leinster Title

November 8, 2018

St Mary’s, Edenderry captured the Leinster Colleges SFC A title for only the second time when getting over the finish line just ahead of their Stillorgan opponents in a thrilling final at Navan’s Pairc Tailteann on Saturday.

In an intriguing contest both sides enjoyed spells of supremacy and after they were on level terms four times in the second half, extra-time looked very likely. But then in added time Ruairi McNamee proved a hero with a brilliant score from near the left touchline with a spectacular winning point.

It was the last kick of the game and enabled St Mary’s to add to the 2009 provincial success while a gallant Colaiste Eoin outfit were left to regret a string of missed chances in the first half.

After falling four points in arrears during the opening 10 minutes, the South Dublin school, also looking for a second Leinster success, responded to have the better of the opening half and lead by 2-4 to 1-4 at the break.

The Dublin lads began the better with Oisin O Ruairc giving them the lead with a point. They should have had a goal after three minutes but Edenderry netminder Cormac Hurley kept out Roibeard MacDaibhid’s close-range shot.

St Mary’s got a boost a couple of minutes later when Cian McMonagle, who had bagged a hat-trick of goals in the semi-final win over holders Dundalk Colleges, finished to the net again, with a ground shot following a strong run by Philip Foy.

That got Edenderry on the board and points from Ger Leech (free) and Sean Doyle left them 1-2 to 0-1 to the good. However, Colaiate Eoin began to stamp their authority and Colm O Croinin shot their first goal on 17 minutes.

Maitis MacDonnacha provided the opening with a clever ball into Daithi O Cathmhaoil who gave the ball to O Croinin too fire to the net from close range. Seven minutes later Oisin O Ruairc put his name on Colaiste Eoin’s second goal following a free from the right by Conall O Neill.

St Mary’s resumed strongly with early points from Daniel Flynn, Mark Nolan and Ger Leech to get on level terms. Colaiste Eoin responded to lead by 2-8 to 1-8 at the three-quarter stage.

The Dublin side were unlucky when O Neill fired a rasping shot against the woodwork with 10 minutes to go. Wing-back Sean Moriarty made his mark at the other end with points from a 45 and play.

A Leech pointed free left Mary’s two to the good before white flag efforts from substitute Fionnan Motherway and O Croinin left them all square with time running out. However, it was not enough as McNamee sent the St Mary’s contingent away very happy.

St Mary’s, Edenderry: C Hurley; L Flynn, C McNamee, M Kearney; S Moriarty (0-2, 1 45), P Foy, J Dowdall; D Grehan, D Flynn (0-1); R Caffrey, M Nolan (0-2), C McMonagle (1-0); G Leech (0-6, 5 frees), S Doyle (0-1), R McNamee (0-2) Sub: A O’Connor for Dowdall (29).

Colaiste Eoin: L O Ceallaigh; C O Fainin, L O Treasaigh, S O Caomhanaigh; J Clintiuin, E O Dochartaigh, C O Fearghail; R MacDaibhid, O Breathnach; R O Meachair, M MacDonnacha, C O Croinin (1-3); C O Neill (0-1), D Cathmhaoil (0-4, 4 frees), O O Ruairc (1-1). Subs: C O Ceallachain for O Meachair (half-time), M O Cathalain for O Caomhanaigh (40), F Motherway (0-1) for O Cathalain ( 24).

Referee: F Kelly (Longford).