Senior Hurling Championship SF
St. Fechin's 1-14 Knockbridge 1-12
Holders St. Fechin's progressed to their third Louth Senior Hurling Championship final with a narrow victory over Knockbridge in Castlebellingham on Saturday afternoon.
Having dusted themselves down from two opening round defeats, St. Fechin's avenged one of those losses in impressive style.
Cathal Ryan's men were in full control throughout, however, on the scoreboard, their slender lead of two-points did not do them justice at neither the break nor at full-time.
Michael Ryan gave the Termonfeckin natives a blistering start, notching three-points for himself with Paddy Lynch again proving his worth from deadballs.
The ability of Trevor Hilliard's side to hang in the game was key, though. Shane Fennell kept them in touch with frees and a memorable score from a sideline cut.
Vincent Hynes was a constant menace for the Hoops and he gained reward with the game-sealing major, but, unfortunately, he later saw red which will see him miss the decider.
Substitute Ronan Curran gave Knockbridge a glimmer of hope with a goal, though Ryan’s charges hung on and they now seek vengeance for their other championship defeat with Naomh Moninne awaiting in the September 24th showpiece.
St. Fechin's: Stephen Hackett; Robert Moynagh, Darren McDonnell, Brian Devlin; Wayne Treacy (0-1), Cathal Ryan, Óisín Byrne; Ian Connor, Donal Ryan (0-1); Paddy Lynch (0-7, six free and one sideline), Seaghan Conneely (0-1), Niall Devlin (0-1); Vincent Hynes (1-0), Michael Ryan (0-3), David Stephenson
Subs: Colin Griffin for Brian Devlin (HT)
Knockbridge: Kevin McNally; Stephen Kettle, Brian Buckley, Gavin Kane; Mark Wallace, Conor Deane, Andrew Smyth; James Costello, Gerry McKeown; David Kettle, Ronan Byrne, Sean Marry (0-1); Shane Fennell (0-9, seven frees and one sideline), David Dunne, Seán Brennan (0-1)
Subs: Robert Wallace (0-1) for Marry (HT), Peter Brennan for Dunne (37), Ronan Curran (1-0) for David Kettle (39), Liam Molloy for Brennan (49), Ronan Mulholland for Kane (55)
Referee: Jim O’Rourke