Johnny Breen's goal wasn't enough for the Young Irelands tonight. (Pic: Arthur Kinahan)
Intermediate Football Championship Relegation Play-off
St. Fechin's 0-15 Dundalk Young Irelands 2-8
St. Fechin's hung on to their intermediate status by a single thread with a one-point victory over the Dundalk Young Irelands in Monasterboice on Friday night.
Both sides overcame the tension of the relegation to express themselves in an entertaining contest. County-man Ronan Holcroft was inspirational at times for the Termonfechin side. While the counter-attacking Jordan O’Donoughue did not deserve to be on the losing side on the night.
Setting up with a defensive gameplan paid dividends for the Dundalk side early on. Johnny Breen rounded two men and neatly finished under Niall McDonnell to put them one ahead at the break.
After half-time, O’Donoghue added two frees and had the Fechins on the ropes. Holdcroft, however, struck three out of the next four scores to no reply for the Hoops.
Though, just when Vincent Haughney’s side seemd to be coasting, Dean Maguire took advantage to bury a goal to leave one in it.
But Holdcroft settled the nerves again before O’Donoghue clawed back another, but Kieran Maguire's charges pushed themselves to the limit and can hold their heads high, although they’ll feel rather low at the thoughts of playing in the Junior Championship next year.
St. Fechin's: Niall McDonnell; Leo McGrane, David Collier, Donal Ryan; Niall Carolan (0-1), Niall McCabe, Eoghan Duffy; Dermot McConnell, Bevan Duffy; Harry McArdle, Colm O’Neill, Ryan Sheridan; Joe Corrigan (0-4), Ronan Holcroft (0-8), Niall Devlin (0-2)
Subs: Jamie King, Eoin Burke, Brendan Fanning, Seán McConnell
Dundalk Young Irelands: Fergal Sheeky; Peter McCourt, Ciaran Murray, Robbie Farrell; Kevin Keelan, Peter Nixon, Shane O’Connell; Peter Rogers, Andrew Nixon; Dermot Mone (0-1), Jordan O’Donoghue (0-5, 4f), Johnny Lynch, Aaron Rogers, Johnny Breen (1-0), Dean Maguire(1-2).
Subs: Peter Flynn, Aidan Sheeky, Seán Laverty
Referee: Stephen Murphy (Naomh Máirtín)