Louth see off Longford’s fight back to qualify for the Shield Final

Louth 2-14 Longford 1-14
A place in the Gerry Reilly U-16 FT Shield Final was at stake in this Rd.3 game played on Saturday evening in Millbrook, Oldcastle. It went right down to the wire with Longford only needing to draw to qualify, but it was Louth’s points in injury time that insured their place in the Shield Final.
Louth were quick off the mark with 4 unanswered points by the 8th minute with two from Patrick Johnston and one a piece by Cathal Fleming and Ryan Walsh. In fact Louth could have been much further ahead by this time having also recorded 4 wides. It did not look good for Longford. When Daniel Reynolds got Longford’s first point in the 13th minute, it changed the whole game. Longford added 3 points to their tally to Louth’s one point y the 18th minute to leave the minimum between the sides. Longford’s Eoghan McCormack finished a great move to the Louth net to give Longford a 2 point lead. Louth had the sides level with points from Daire Nally (f) and Conor Faulkner by the 23rd minute. Longford responded with 2 points from Cian Dooner (1f) only for Louth to get 2 to have the sides level at the break.
H/T: Louth 0-9 Longford 1-6
Louth started brilliantly on the resumption with a Patrick Johnson point and a James McGillick goal.
In fact they could have been much further ahead only for a great save by the Longford ‘keeper, Paddy Murray.
When it looked like Louth were going to take control, Longford had other ideas. They responded with 4 points to have the sides level again, before Aidan O Ceallaigh’s point had them up by one.
Louth’s, Reece Reilly’s goal in the 41st minute turned out to be crucial. They had other goal chances, but the Longford defence were holding strong.
Twice, Longford got to within a point, but it was Louth who finished the strongest into injury time with points from Ryan Walsh (f) and Conor Quigley for a deserved victory.

Louth now play Wicklow in the Gerry Reilly U-16 FT Shield Final on Saturday next, 29 July, in Millbrook, Oldcastle at 3.00 pm

Louth’s Rúairí Hanlon was presented with the RESPA ‘man of the match’ award by Bobby Kellett (Kelletts Oldcastle Ltd)

Louth: Cian Rogan, Caolán McCabe, Finbarr Lynch, Jamie Winters, Aaron McDonnell, Rúairí Hanlon, James Harper, James McGillick (1-0), Joe Mee, Cathal Fleming (0-3), Dáire Nally Capt (0-3,2f), Conor Faulkner (0-1), Patrick Johnston (1-2), Ryan Walsh (0-3,1f), Eoghan Ryan
Subs: Jonathan Commins (0-1) for Eoghan Ryan, Andrew Lennon for McDonnell, Conor Quigley (0-1) for McGillick, Darragh McCoy for McCabe, Gabriel Bell for Faulkner, Adam Fee for Johnston

Longford: Paddy Murray, Mark O’Neill, Conor Farrelly, Peter Dempsey, Cian Nolan, Eoghan McCormack (1-1), Euan Finneran, Tadhg McNevin, Cian Ó Nualláin, Aidan Ó Ceallaigh (0-2), Reece Reilly (0-3,2f), Jake Taylor, Cian Dooner (0-7, 3f), Daniel Reynolds (0-1)
Subs: Jake Donnelly for Belton, Darragh O Connell for Taylor, James Kiernan for Reynolds

Ref: Alfie Devine (Westmeath)