Kilcar are Donegal U-21 Champions for the first time since 1974 – just edging out Naomh Conaill by two points in a thrilling final at O’Donnell Park in Letterkenny today.
Kilcar county star Patrick McBrearty had an inspired game, particularly in the first half as his side raced into an early lead.
Dermot McGinley fired in a superb goal and when McBreaty fired into the net, the Kilcar supporters were on their feet.
Naomh Conaill seemed to wake up after that and there were a few moments when the tempers got the better of the players before Dermot Molloy found the net with a great effort.
But the Kilcar fans couldn’t believe their eyes when McGinley raced onto a through ball and scored his second – and Kilcar’s third – goal of the first half which ended on a scoreline of 3-06 to 1-03.
Naomh Conaill lads must have had a roasting at half time as they came flying out and points from Seamus Corcoran and Dermot Molloy reduced the deficit.
And when a ‘nothing’ ball from Eunan Doherty went over the Kilcar keeper into the net, it looked as though Naomh Conaill would pull it back. Molloy added another score from a free to reduce the deficit to just three points.
Ryan McHugh scored for Kilcar as his side looked to re-establish a foothold on the game but Naomh Conaill – with Molloy in top form – continued to press and the supporters were delighted when John O’Malley levelled.
There was nothing in it terms of score at this stage – or on the park.
But then Mark McHugh won and coverted a free-kick to put Kilcar in the lead again; a lead extended a few moments later when McBrearty pointing – to give Kilcar the win by 3-09 to 2-10.
It was an incredible advertisement for U-21 county football.
Congratulations to everyone at Kilcar. And commiserations to a good Naomh Conaill side.
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