St Finbarr’s 1-16
St Michael’s 2-10
ST FINBARR'S are the Rebel Óg Fe 16 Premier 1 Football League champions as they defeated a spirited St Michaels side 1-16 to 2-10 in a highly entertaining playoff final at Pairc Ui Rinn on Saturday afternoon.
Superb scoring displays from left corner forward Shay Fenton, who scored their only goal, and right corner-forward William Buckley, who grabbed four points from play and one from a free, was enough to see the Barrs land the silverware thanks to this three points victory.
This showpiece occasion started evenly as the two sides exchanged early scores. The Barrs twice edged their noses in front with points Ben O’Connor (free) and William Buckley but Michaels twice hit back to level terms thanks to Ryan Sweeney and Eoin Coughlan.
Inspired by the influential Ben O’Connor in the heart of the midfield, the men from Togher threatened to race clear as they scored three points without reply with the aforementioned number eight claiming two of those.
But their opponents from Mahon refused to let their heads drop and they reduced the deficit to just the minimum by the 13th minute as Luke O’Herlihy (free) and Ryan Vaughan split the uprights, 0-5 to 0-4.
St Finbarrs’ Stephen Osubor Kennedy got his first point of the afternoon following a purposeful run and moments later the blues got their first goal through a clinical close-range finish from corner forward Shay Fenton.
They would add three more points to their tally in the second quarter but Michaels regrouped during the water break and two goals from the excellent Rory O’Shaughnessy and Niall Allen saw them trail by just two points at half time, 1-9 to 2-4.
Finbarrs started the second period by raising a white flag but three unanswered points from Michaels - two of those well taken by Luke O’Herlihy - levelled terms in the 44th minute, 1-10 to 2-7.
These competitive and talented sides remained level by the 55th minute - 1-14 to 2-9 - but the Barrs soon regained their composure after some bad wides to finish strongly.
Michaels were dealt a blow when Ryan Vaughan was dismissed for a second yellow card offence and that came in the midst of the Barr’s late four points to one run which was enough to earn them the win.
Scorers for St Finbarr’s: S Fenton 1-2, W Buckley 0-5 (0-1 frees), C Hegarty 0-3, B O’Connor 0-3 (0-2 frees), C Buckley, S Osubor Kennedy, D O’Shea 0-1 each.
St Michael’s: R O’Shaughnessy 1-2, L O’Herlihy 0-4 (0-2 frees), N Allen 1-0, R Sweeney 0-2, E Coughlan and R Vaughan 0-1 each.
ST FINBARR’S: C Collins; R O’Donovan, S Kennedy, J Kennefick; D Dwane, F Crowley, C Buckley; B O’Connor, S Osubor Kennedy; R Bennett, C Hegarty, C McCarthy; W Buckley, D O’Shea, S Fenton.
Subs: J Barrett for D O’Shea (39).
ST MICHAEL’S: M O’Connell; F Leahy, C Coakley, R Aherne; O McAdoo, Lee O’Sullivan, R Kavanagh; S Murphy, R O’Shaughnessy; E Coughlan, R Sweeney, D Lucey; L O’Herlihy, R Vaughan, N Allen.
Subs: D Browne for E Coughlan (36).
Referee: James Regan.