Trailing by five points at one stage of the game, the title holders Killoe came storming back in the second half and a glorious spell that yielded 2-3 without reply in the space of six minutes shattered a gallant Longford Slashers side in the U-21 ‘A’ Championship semi-final at Pearse Park on Sunday last.
Producing a fine first half performance of high intensity with Andrew Dalton a real driving force at centrefield, Slashers (without long term casualty Conor Clarke) were 2-5 to 1-3 in front when Colm Farrell shot to the back of the Emmet Og net in the 27th minute and a shock win appeared a possibility.
Midfielder Paddy Thompson had got Killoe (minus the services of injured key players Padraig McCormack and Daniel Mimnagh) off to the perfect start when he fired home a cracking goal with just four minutes gone but it proved to be a serious struggle for quite some time and lethargic Emmet Og could have been in deeper trouble when the post denied Ruairi Clarke another goal for Slashers with three minutes gone on the changeover - a turning point.
It was Clarke who got his side’s first goal in the 24th minute as the sky-blues ended up leading by 2-5 to 1-5 at the break but Killoe dominated the second half in clocking up 4-6.
Goals from Paddy Thompson and Darragh Bennett in the space of a couple of minutes changed the course of the game completely and while just four points separated the sides (3-10 to 2-9) in the closing stages, Killoe finished strongly with a further brace of goals through the hard working Ryan Murray and substitute Jamie King.
KILLOE EMMET OG: Shane Fitzpatrick; Michael Brady, Ronan Keogh, Franklin O’Reilly; Cian Farrelly, Darragh Bennett (1-0), Darragh Gilna; Paddy Thompson (2-0), Paddy Kiernan; Liam Hughes (0-2), Ryan Murray (1-1), Brian Finnerty; David Mimnagh (0-1), Mark Hughes (0-6, three frees), Shane Tully.
Subs:- Jamie King (1-1) for C Farrelly (injured, 23 mins); Shane Clarke for B Finnerty (half-time); Ciaran Donohoe for D Mimnagh (injured, 58 mins).
LONGFORD SLASHERS: Daniel Doherty; Paddy Farrell, Adrian Duffy, Shane Rodgers; Tadhg Maher, Shane O’Connell, Kevin Finnan (0-1); Andrew Dalton (0-3, one free), Brian Walsh (0-2, one free); Ciaran Farrell (0-4, two frees), Sean Clarke, Ruairi Clarke (1-0); Tom Madden, Colm Farrell (1-0), Danny Monks.
Subs:- Niall Kelly for D Monks (34 mins); Ryan Mangan for T Maher (injured, 47 mins).
Referee: Stephen Tierney (Mostrim).
Who will win the U-21 ‘A’ Football Championship Final?
Killoe Emmet Og v
Fr. Manning Gaels
Killoe Emmet Og