THIS MFL Division 2 final at Hawkfield on Saturday was a cracking game between two excellent sides. Both teams looked practically home and hosed at different stages and in the end it was Castledermot who were crowned champions despite Leixlip scoring two injury time goals.
Robert Tone opened for Leixlip and while Castledermot took the lead through points from Aaron Murphy and Eugene Mahon, it was the boys from the north of the county who took control adding seven points and opening a six point gap, mainly through the impressive Robert Tone who was causing the ‘Dermot defence a lot or problems.
County minor Mahon reduced the deficit before Tone again left six separating them with 22 minutes gone.
Fifteen year old Aaron Murphy (keep a look out for this lad you are going to hear a lot more about him) reduced the deficit as the south of the county team began to get their act together, adding three more points before the break which saw Leixlip leading 0-9 to 0-7.
On the resumption Robert Tone and Aaron Murphy exchanged points before Leixlip found the net, Shane O’Grady using his pace to outstrip a few defenders and putting his side into a five point lead (1-10 to 0-8).
Castledermot then upped their game and slowly but surely began to dismantle that lead and by he three-quarter stage had it narrowed down to just a single point.
A lovely then move saw Eoghan Farrell send a great ball into Aaron Murphy and the youngster did the rest.
Castledermot were now dominant as Leixlip lost their shape totally. Points from Hugh Mahon and Murphy stretched the lead to four before Robert Tone reduced it to just one score (1-14 to 1-11).
Back came Castledermot with four unanswered points and a lead of seven as we entered time added on.
Leixlip, in fairness did not throw in the towel and duly got their reward.
A Robert Tone free fell short, was gathered by Daniel Gleeson who was fouled in the square and Tone found the net after his initial effort came off the upright.
From the kick out Leixlip piled forward again with Eoin Molloy making no mistake among a host of players to make it 1-18 to 3-11 three minutes into injury time.
The kick out however was the last action and a relieved but worthy Castledermot held on to take the title.
Some fine display from both sides with Hugh Mahon, Aaron Murphy, Brian Noland and John Joe Mahon all standing out while Leixlip had excellent displays from Robert Tone, Ben L’Estrange, Tom Gibbons, and Josh Farrell.
Castledemot, Eugene Mahon 0-11 (9 frees), Aaron Murphy 1-5 (two 45), John Joe Mahon 0-1, Adrian Kelly 0-1.
Leixlip, Robert Tone, 1-8 (3 frees, penalty), Shane O’Grady 1-1, Eoin Molloy 1-1, Dessie Hynes 0-1,
David Dooley; Larry Wall, Harry Germaine, Eoghan Farrell; Jamie Doyle, James Reilly, Mark Ormsby; Brian Nolan, John Joe Mahon; Adrian Kelly, Eugene Mahon, Paul Murphy; Mark Kerwan, Aaron Murphy, Anthony Kelly. Subs: Kealan Hegarty for Paul Murphy (39 minute).
Aaron Cleary; David Harrington, Alan Maloney, Darragh Keary; Stephen Ryan, Ryan Doyle, Ben L’Estrange; Eoin Molloy, Michael Hanlon; Eoin Clarke, Tom Gibbons, Josh Farrell; Dessie Hynes, Shane O’Grady, Robert Tone. Subs: Cathal Derivan for Josh Farrell (59 minute).