Ardee, St. Marys' Mark Fay. (Pic: Arthur Kinahan)
Sheelan Cup final
Ardee, St. Mary's 0-21 Dundalk Gaels 1-13 (AET)
Ardee, St. Mary's will face Mattock Rangers in the Paddy Sheelan Cup final after the Deesiders overcame Dundalk Gaels in a marathon contest last night.
It took extra-time for the hosts to shake off Malachy O'Rourke's men, who certainly don't seem to have lost any of the battling qualities that saw them reach last October's Senior Football Championship final.
However, under the tutelage of Seán Barry, St. Mary's look a stern prospect and have done so throughout their four-match winning streak to this point and they will surely fancy their chances of dethroning Mattock in the final.
A feature of this titanic semi-final tussle was the marksmanship of Ronan Carroll (0-5, two frees) and Darren Clarke (0-6, five frees) in home colours and Gaels midfielder Seán Murray, who struck eight (six frees) of his side's 13-point tally.
Gaels led 0-7 to 0-6 at the break, however, Ardee found their stride after the break and only for Pádraig Fallon's goal, their point-taking ability would have seen them progress by the time referee Aidan Shevlin brought the regulation time to a conclusion.
Extra-time was to follow and here St. Mary's pulled away despite dogged Gaels resistance. In the end, the winners' ability to spread the scores across the team - they had eight different scorers in all - told as the Ramparts men fell just short.
Ardee, St. Mary's: Peter Duffy; Brendan Matthews (0-3), Philip Trainor, Conor Keenan; Wayne Matthews, Karl Faulkner, Kian Moran (0-2); Robbie Leavy, Dáire McConnon (0-1); Paudy Clarke (0-1), Ronan Carroll (0-5, two frees), Mark Fay (0-1); Cian Commins, Jamie Rooney, Darren Clarke (0-6, five frees)
Subs: Dean Matthews (0-2), Robbie Clarke, RJ Callaghan, David Carroll, Alan Kirk
Dundalk Gaels: Joe O’ Donoghue; James Lynch, Jamie Faulkner, Conor Morgan; Adrian Rafferty (0-1), Óisín Murray, David McComish (0-1); Seán Murray (0-8), David Moloney (0-1); Gary Shevlin, Éanna McArdle, Barry Watters; Chris Sweeney (0-1), Niall Hearty (0-1), Eamonn Kenny
Subs: Pádraig Fallon (1-0), Andrew Curley, Liam Lynch, Emmet Lindsay, Dáire O’Callaghan
Referee: Aidan Shevlin (Stabannon Parnells)