Down SFC final: Burren deny Kilcoo a seventh straight title
Donal O’Hare’s two goals ensure a different result in repeat of 2017 final in Pairc Esler
Donal O’Hare inspired Burren to victory over Kilcoo in the Down SFC final. Photograph: Matt Mackey/Inpho
Burren 2-12 Kilcoo 2-09
Burren denied Kilcoo their seventh Down Championship title in a row after a dogged display in Pairc Esler on Sunday.
This repeat of last year’s final was a dog-fight from the start but it was persistence that saw Burren through in the end.
The first half finished all-square at 0-09 to 2-03, thanks to goals from Ceilum Doherty and Jerome Johnston for Kilcoo. Goalkeeper Cathal Murdock was inspirational for Burren when he travelled up the field and planted four monster frees between the sticks, three from 50 metres.
It was a tight first half with Burren leading by a point before super interplay between Paul Devlin and Miceal Rooney set up Doherty for the first goal. Burren kept in touch before Johnston hit the net on 21 minutes to make it 2-02 to 0-05, but the St Mary’s side kept plugging away and scored four-in-a-row to level proceedings at the break.
A Donal O’Hare penalty helped Burren’s cause early in the second half putting them two in front, but it was level again midway through the half at 1-10 to 2-07.
An O’Hare goal put three points between the teams with ten minutes left on the clock and Burren kept the Magpies to within two until the final whistle, which heralded a mighty roar from the Burren supporters in the 6526 strong crowd.
Burren: C Murdock (0-4, 4f); S Fegan, K McKernan, A McAvoy; D McEntee, C Cox, C McGovern; D Rooney, R Treanor; C Foy (0-1), P Poland, R McGrath (0-1); L Kerr (0-1), E Toner, D O’Hare (2-5, 3f). Subs: S McArdle for McEntee (H-T), C Toner for R Treanor (41mins), M McEvoy for C Cox (43mins), S Murdock for P Poland (52mins).
Kilcoo: N Kane; N Branagan, A Branagan, P Devlin; M Rooney (0-1), D Branagan, JJ McLaughlin; E Branagan, J McClean (0-1); J Johnston (1-1), M Morgan, C Doherty (1-0);C Laverty, M Devlin (0-1), P Devlin (0-4, 3f). Subs: R McEvoy for Morgan (38mins), R Johnston (0-1) for C Laverty (38mins), C Laverty for M Rooney (5mins), G McEvoy for P Devlin (61mins).