Heslin’s late late show takes title for Gortletteragh

A dramatic finish from Gortletteragh which saw Jack Heslin grab a vital fifth goal for Gortletteragh saw them come from behind against Fenagh St. Caillin’s to win last Friday’s Minor League 9-a-side title in Pairc Sheain Ui Eslin, Ballinamore.

A dramatic finish from Gortletteragh which saw Jack Heslin grab a vital fifth goal for Gortletteragh saw them come from behind against Fenagh St. Caillin’s to win last Friday’s Minor League 9-a-side title in Pairc Sheain Ui Eslin, Ballinamore.

Gortletteragh 5-7 Fenagh St. Caillin’s 5-5

Backed by a strong wind in the first half, Gortletteargh dominated the game in the first half with Padraig Gallagher and Alan McCann dominating the game but the early stages of the second half saw Fenagh roar back into the game, goals from Michael Doonan and Donal Wrynn turning the game on its head as Fenagh went from five points down to leading by two goals in the first ten minutes of the second half.

However, Gortletteragh dug deep and despite Ryan O’Rourke finishing to the net with four minutes to go, Gortletteragh still managed a dramatic finish to edge out a thrilling game.

In the first half, Michael Doonan saw a third minute shot hit the post and rebound into the keeper’s hands before Donal Wrynn converted an early free. But Gortletteragh hit back when Alan McCann volleyed over the bar and then added a second a minute later.

Gortletteragh took control with a point from Evan Ward and a Padraig Gallagher goal but Fenagh hit back when Michael Doonan found the net on nine minutes. Gallagher and Michael Doonan swapped points but, despite Wrynn skimming a shot past the post, Gortletteragh finished the half strongest when McCann finished off a great move with a point and Jack Heslin scored a goal on the stroke of halftime to leave his team 2-5 to 1-3 in front.

That lead evaporated when Michael Doonan converted a penalty 45 seconds into the half after a foul on Richard Heaney and Donal Wrynn soloed through from 40 metres out to fire to the Gortletteragh net. Michael Doonan added a free before a great pass from Wrynn found Shane Doonan in behind the Gortletteragh defence and he fired to the net.

Wrynn added a free to leave Fenagh six clear but Gortletteragh showed great resilience with Padraig Gallagher converting a penalty after Evan Ward was found before Ward tapped over a point. Gallagher then converted his second penalty, this time for a foul on himself after a long run and Gortletteragh were now a point up with five minutes to go.

But less than a minute later, Wrynn’s long through ball set up Ryan O’Rourke. His first shot was saved by Niall Tiernan but the Fenagh lad finished rebound to net to put his team two points up.

But Gortletteragh weren’t finished and from a kickout, Padraig Gallagher’s long pass found Jack Heslin who beat his marker and dispatched stylishly to the net for the lead once more. A great long range point from Alan McCann finished the scoring while Aaron Scollan made a fantastic save to deny Gallagher a fourth goal.

Fenagh never gave up but under pressure from the Gortletteragh defence, Shane Doonan shot wide to leave Gortletteragh celebrating.

Best for Gortletteragh were the excellent Padraig Gallagher and Alan McCann while Jack Heslin showed a great eye for a score as their defence was very solid. For Fenagh, Donal Wrynn, Michael Doonan, Shane Doonan and Ryan O’Rourke stood out.