Pennine League Final
ST BRENDAN'S 3-11
JOHN MITCHELS 1-11
10th June 2018 at Turn Moss
The Senior team had a good win against rivals John Mitchels of Liverpool to annex the Pennine League Division 1 title for 2018. For a game played in blistering heat both teams showed a good level of conditioning, but it was the introduction of fresh legs at key times that helps the Saints get over the line in a game between two very evenly matched teams.
The contest ebbed and flowed for the opening quarter and John Mitchels opened the scoring after 5 minutes through Darren Russell, the Kerry man curling over a typically stylish effort. This was quickly followed up by a Padraig Slane point. In response St Brendan’s opening score came from Paddy McCoy following good support play by Chris Mullen. As the game progressed new signings Dan McLaughlin and Sean Keenan showed their ability in defence and attack respectively.
The first major of the day came from full forward Colm Conway who powered through to notch a customary goal, not long after the same player was brought down for a penalty which Keenan duly converted to leave the score Brendans 2-2 Mitchels 0-2. As the clock ticked towards half time the teams exchanged scores to leave it Brendan’s 2-5 Mitchels 0-5 at the short whistle.
Whatever was said to the Liverpool lads at half time certainly had an effect, they registered the first scores of the second half inside 5 minutes with a point and well taken goal from new midfielder Peader McCarthy, score Brendan’s 2-5 Mitchels 1-6. In spite of the setback the Manchester lads stuck to their task and when cool heads were needed experienced duo Paddy Murphy and John Gibney settled the team down with important contributions in defence and attack. Both teams exchanged points for a time as the play went from end to end without much regard for tactics, both teams were content to run the ball forward at pace with Cormac Crowe of Mitchels and Paddy McCoy of Brendan’s a constant threat to the opposition defence.
As the final quarter approached Sands and Mullen began to take control around the middle, and with the introduction of David Sirle, Tom Grady and Sean Doyle, St Brendan’s had just enough in the tank to score a vital goal again through Keenan, ably assisted by Tom Grady who offered a more direct threat in the full forward line. This put Brendan’s 3-7 to 1-8 up and the lads didn’t look back. Mitchels found time to notch 3 more scores but Brendan’s now with a lead to protect were able to score on the break as Colm Conway and Tom Grady rounded off a good team performance to secure the first Senior silverware of the Lancashire season.
As tends to be the case during the season for a variety of reasons both teams were missing a number of A list players, Mitchels will add another dimension through the return of Niall McCartan and Michael Molloy, while Brendan’s will hope to call upon the talents of Aaron Murtagh and Lancashire hurling captain Greg Jacob in the coming weeks after the small matter of a visit to Croke Park for the Lory Meagher Final.
1. Camillus Smith (Meath)
2. Michael Magee (Down)
3. Dan McLaughlin (Derry)
4. Ryan Sweeney (Donegal)
5. Ryan Conroy (Laois)
6. Paddy Murphy (Armagh)
7. Stephen Rafferty (Down)
8. Stephen Sands (Down)
9. Chris Mullen (Down)
10. John Gibney (Down)
11. Sean Keenan (Fermanagh)
12. Michael Collins (Manchester)
13. James Gallagher (Antrim)
14. Colm Conway (Manchester)
15. Paddy McCoy (Armagh)
17. Tom Grady (Manchester) for McCoy
18. David Sirle (Leitrim) for Rafferty
19. Sean Doyle (Kerry) for McLaughlin