A stoppage time goal from Castledermot corner forward Eugene Mahon grabbed the SFL Division 2 title right from St Kevins’ grasp in a rather fiery affair in Kilcullen last Saturday afternoon, writes Eoin Beatty.
Senior Football League Division 2 Final
St Kevin’s: 1-9
The last minute goal plus an insurance point from the boot of the Intermediate Championship’s top scorer, Paddy Mahon rounded off what was a relatively successful year for the men from the south of the county.
Castledermot came close to reaching the IFC semi final only to be beaten by JTB in a replay at the quarter final stage. They did however, manage promotion to Division 1 and with victory over St Kevin’s in the League Final last weekend, they added silverware to go with it.
As for Kevin’s, they experienced a season of contrast. The future seemed to be bright as they too earned promotion to the top tier of league football. However they only rescued their Senior Championship status by the skin of their teeth, edging past Round Towers in the Relagation Final following 3 consecutive defeats.
It was a fiery encounter but in a fair and sporting manner. There was no real malice or intent from either side, just 2 teams determined and passionate about bringing home The Jerome Casey Memorial Cup.
Castledermot were quickest out of the blocks and had there noses in front with merely one minute gone through a point from the ever reliable Paddy Mahon.
Kevin’s to their credit, did step up to the mark and soon found themselves to be in the lead, First Barry Noone equalised with a point similar to his opposite number 14, before Noone himself rattled the back of Paul Murphy’s net from the penalty spot after Jason Brosnan had been fouled.
The two sides then exchanged points before the half time break with the pick of the bunch coming from Seanie Johnston.
The scoreline at the interval reflected the opening period fairly with the two sides level at 1-4 to 0-7 respectively. However, the second half would display some controversy.
Just as had been the case in the first 30 minutes, there was little to choose between the two. Castledermot once again nudged themselves in front with a 45’ from Paddy Mahon.
Seanie Johnston and Barry Noone, arguably St Kevins’ best players on the day did all the scoring for their side in the second half and linked up well throughout. Had it not been for Johnston’s accuracy and Noone’s strength, Kevin’s would have found it very difficult to break down the Castledermot defence.
As the game entered the last ten minutes, tensions were flaring both on the sideline and on the pitch. At this stage, the men in black and red were beginning to pull away and the momentum seemed to be swinging in their favour. 2 more points from Noone and Johnston respectively fixed them firmly in the driving seat with a two point cushion.
As any other team would when losing a final in the last couple of minutes, Castledermot began piling men forward with an all out attack mentality and eventually it paid off. Emmet O’Keefe peeled away from his marker and aimed to send the ball over the bar, only to see his effort ricochet off the post, however Eugene Mahon was on hand to fire the ball home into the empty net.
It was then another Mahon, this time Paddy who would all but secure the famous victory for Castledermot with his 7th point of the game to ensure his side would re-enter Division 1 Football in style.
Paul Murphy, Liam Cosgrave, Willie Kelly, Tomas Murphy, Bryan Nolan, Padraic Murphy, Paul Lawlor, Gavin Farrell, Damien Hendy, Paddy Whelan, David Keating (0-1), Anthony Lawlor (0-1), Emmet O’Keefe (0-1), Paddy Mahon (0-7 5f), Eugene Mahon (1-1). Sub: Dean Farrell for Paul Lawlor.
Keith Fitzharris, Paddy Walshe, Jason Brosnan, Mark Grace, Damien Reilly, Tom Barron, Ross Carew, Mark Fitzharris, Michael Kenny, Cormac Noone, Antoine Carew, Cathal O’Leary, Seanie Johnston (0-5 3f), Barry Noone (1-3), Declan Flaherty. Subs: Brian Dunne (0-1) for Paddy Walshe, John Fitzharris for Antoine Carew, Darren Fox for Cormac Noone.