2020 KERRY PETROLEUM NOVICE CLUB FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL
CROMANE 3-9 ASDEE 0-8
Cromane were crowned Novice 2020 County Champions at Ballymacelligot on Sunday last over a spirited and dogged Asdee outfit who in fairness didn’t deserve to be at the end of a 10 point defeat; as on many previous occasions very little separated the sides when the met; with a point or two either way the difference.
However on saying that Cromane were fully deserving winners with each member contributing but special mention must go to Darren Houlihan their 2gl hero in attack who was later to be given the Man of the Match Award and Donnacha Walsh who dominated midfield with some superb fielding and as he has done in the past with the County he covered almost every blade of grass and who were a constant threat throughout.
The game got underway with Asdee having wind advantage but it was the Mid Kerrymen who were very much to the fore and despite being guilty of some poor shooting and a strong rearguard from Asdee they were having problems putting scores on the board and at the first water break had a lead of 3pts without reply with Mikey Houlihan, Barry Flanagen,(f) and a superb score from their number 6 Brendan Foley.
On the restart the Shannonsiders came more into the game and this was due mainly to their full forward Darragh Keane who was without doubt Asdees best performer. Paul O Carroll popped over their opening score of the game before Darragh Keane kicked a delightful point from the sideline to narrow the gap to a single point.
The game had now livened up with play flowing from end to end with every ball contested to the last. Shane Aherne and Darragh McKeefrey for Cromane with Darragh Keane for Asdee as we moved into injury time where Asdee were dealt a cruel blow as they conceded a penalty which was converted in some style by Darren Houlihan and at the break it was Cromane 1-5 to Asdees 0-3.
On resumption even though they were well in the hunt it was an uphill battle for sure; however even though full forward Darragh McKeefrey split the uprights from the throw in it was Asdee who started to take control and with Eoin Kennedy, Eoin Tydings, Darren Russell,and Kieran Kelly they took the fight to the Cromane boys and by the 8th minute had cut the deficit to a mere 2pts.
Eoin Kennedy with an inspirational score followed by Paul O Carroll,(f), Darragh Keane and Darren Russell and were now putting plenty pressure on the Cromane defence and very much in the game. But when everything seems to be going fine then suddenly it all comes apart; With 15mts still to go Referee Cathal O Dubhda adjudged that there was a leg block and once again Darren Houlihan blasted the penalty shot out of reach of James Kelly the Asdee Keeper to the net. Disaster from an Asdee point of view and even though they battled to the last whistle that goal was to knock the stuffing out of them.
Cromane finished strong with Mikie Houlihan finding the net and points through Mikey Houlihan and Darren Houloihan closed the scoring. Besides already Mentioned; Brice Dorieu, Darragh McKeefrey, Brendan Foley, Mikie Houlihan and Liam Teehan were amongst Cromanes stars.
For Asdee; Darragh Keane, Eoin Kennedy, Eoin Tydings, Kieran Kelly, Darren Russell and Martin Collins. Overall it was a well contested encounter and with a little luck that scoreline could have been much kinder to the Shannonsiders but there is no denying but the better team won.
After the game County Board Vice Chairman, Eamon Whelan was on hand to present the Novice Cup to captain of Cromane club Darran Houlihan amid great scenes of jubilation amongst players and supporters alike.
Team and scorers, Darren Houlihan 2-1, Mikey Houlihan 1-2 (0-1 free), Darragh McKeefry 0-2, Shane Ahern, Cathal Crosby, Brendan Foley, Barry Flanagan (free) 0-1.
Team: Sean Teahan; Liam Teahan, Conor Sugrue, Brice Dourieu; Shane Ahern, Brendan Foley, Ethan Griffin; Donnchadh Walsh, Darren Houlihan; Eanna Healy, Shane O’Neill, Cathal Crosby; Barry Flanagan, Darragh McKeefry, Mikey Houlihan. Subs: John Michael Foley for C Crosby 50m, Finbar Casey for S O’Neill 55m, Emmet Casey for B Flanagan, Danny Shea for S Ahern 58m.
Asdee, James Kelly, Con Carmody, Kieran Kelly, Seane Keane, Conor Keane, John Doran, Jack Keane, Darren Russell, 2pts, Martin Collins, Mike Breen, Eoin Tydings, Eoin Kennedy, 1pt, Paul O Carroll, 2pts,(f), Darragh Keane, 3pts, Brendan Keane. Subs, Jack Collins for Jack Keane, 40th mt, Michael Tydings for. Sean Keane, 48th mt.
Referee Cathal O Dubhda,Ghaeltacht.