Ringmahon Rangers 4 3 Midleton 3
RINGMAHON RANGERS captured the U15 Dennehy’s Health & Fitness Local Cup after a captivating final at Turners Cross on Thursday evening.
Ringmahon showed plenty of strong character and fantastic desire to secure the silverware that was on offer. This was an epic battle, which was gripping and action-packed with plenty of goalmouth action.
Both sides overall more than played their part in what was a captivating contest Midleton, who were managed by Cork City legend Billy Woods, had a decent early opportunity to hit the front. Jay Jay Olajitan went on a dashing run forward towards the box, with his driving low effort saved well by Ringmahon shot-stopper Conor Redmond, with the Knockgriffin Park side threatening moments later through a Joshua Dempsey effort.
However, it was Ringmahon opened the scoring just shy of the quarter of an hour mark. Following a spell of attacking pressure, the ball fell to Kyle Leahy who duly did what was required to put the ball neatly into the back of the net.
Midleton responded in the perfect fashion by finding an equalising goal through Dempsey, who raced into the box and finished with a neat close-range strike.
This final had well and truly ignited into life at this point. Ringmahon went close through a Matthew Ahern strike which was saved well by the Midleton netminder.
It took less than two minutes after this for Ringmahon though to go back in front. It was Leahy who was on hand to finish, with what was a very well taken strike from the edge of the box following a set-piece.
A very lively opening half took another dramatic twist as Midleton got back on level terms once more. Brian Lynch raced through onto the end of a neat through ball from Olajitan, before finishing clinically to the back of the net.
Jayden O’Leary saw his curling free-kick attempt go narrowly just over the crossbar for Ringmahon, with Cian O’Sullivan seeing his strike blocked down at the last moment by a determined Midleton defence.
In the early stages of the second half, Midleton grabbed the lead. Following a long ball forward, Carthach Cronin finished with the deftest of touches from inside the penalty area.
But in a similar fashion to the rest of the contest up to this stage, when one side struck the other responded duly in kind. Ringmahon got their third goal of the evening through what was a well taken headed effort from inside the box by Matthew Ahern.
Adam O’Callaghan had a great opportunity to edge Ringmahon back in the driving seat, but he blasted wide of the mark from an excellent position inside the penalty area.
The decisive goal of the evening came from Ringmahon to edge them in front once more. Thomas Egan broke free at the back post, before controlling well and finishing with a composed finish to the back of the net.
By the midway stage of the second half, Ringmahon's tails were up, as O’Callaghan went close as he saw his strike saved, with Lynch going close with an attempt for Midleton at the other end.
Heading into the latter stages this encounter was still very much up for grabs and there were tense exchanges, with Ringmahon looking for another goal to deliver the knockout blow and Midleton looking to take the game to extra time.
When the action was all said and done, Ringmahon were the team left standing celebrating and clinching the silverware after a cracking duel.