It took a week longer than they would have liked following last week’s defeat by Letterkenny Rovers , but Niall Doherty’s young Fanad Utd side made no mistake at the second opportunity to clinch and retain their league championship title against a determined Kilmacrennan Celtic at Traigh-a -Loch. FANAD UTD. 3 V 2 KILMACRENNAN CEL. The home side found themselves up against a determined visiting team from the start and could have been behind in the fifth minute had keeper Eoghan Jordan not made a brilliant one-handed save from Oran Winstone’s goalbound header. Three minutes later Fanad were in front when Darragh Russell’s poor kick-out went straight to Keelin Mc Groddy and although Russell denied the striker’s first attempt Mc Groddy managed to get a second shot away despite been on the ground. McGroddy has another great chance in the 10th minute but blasted over from 16 yards when through on goal. Two minutes later Kilmacrennan Cel equalized, Paddy Tobin free-kick was spilled by Jordan and Ciaran Black scored from close range. Mc Groddy has another chance in the 28th minute but shot a bit earlier than required and Russell saved comfortably. CHARLIE COLLINS Reports from Traigh-a-Loch. The home team regained the lead in the 32nd minute when Jonah Serrinha did well inside the box before being tripped and Conor Mc Hugh blasted home the resulting penalty to make it 2-1 and that’s how it remained until the break. Six minutes into the second-Half the visitors had a let-off when Darragh Greene’s cross cum shot deceived everyone and rebounded back off the post to safety. It was all Fanad at this stage and there was a feeling that it was only a matter of time before they increased their lead. Twenty-five minutes into the second-Half they still hadn’t done that and the nerves were beginning to show both on and off the pitch as Kilmacrennan kept battling against the odds. In the 73rd it happened, the visitors equalized, a free-kick from Half-way was headed clear by Peter Curran but only to the waiting Ryhs Mullan who blasted to the net from 22 yards to make it 2-2 and Fanad’s title hopes in the melting pot. It didn’t last long however, three minutes in fact as Conor Mc Hugh fired Home a long range free-kick after a needless foul, keeper Russell could have done better given how far the ball travelled from Mc Hugh’s boot. Kilmacrennan were reduced to ten men in the 85th minute when Mullen got a straight Red Card for a foul on Steve Mc Elwaine. To their credit the visitors kept battling to the end but Fanad had just done enough to end what’s been an excellent season despite showing some signs of nerves in the last few games with the winning post in sight. FANAD U; Eoghan Jordan , Bernard Mc Gettigan, Shaun Kerr , Fergus Friel , Peter Curran , Padraig Mc Ginty , Jonah Serrinha Darren Mc Elwaine, Conor Mc Hugh, Keelin Mc Groddy ( Darragh Greene 35 mins ), Ryan Toye. KILMACRENNAN CEL ; Darragh Russell, Ryhs Mullen , Oisin Cassidy, Darragh Doherty , Ciaran Black , Patrick Tobin, Eoin Watson, Oran Winstone , Stevie Mc Elwaine, Kieran Tobin, Ryan Mc Fadden. REFEREE; Marty Mc Garrigle.
Fanad United retain Dick Duffy Memorial Donegal Youth League.
Author of 'Boxing In Donegal: A History (2021)' - the definitive history of the sport in County Donegal - and 'Relentless: A Race Through Time', the 2019 memoir of former Irish Athletics Team Manager Patsy McGonagle. From St Johnston and now based in Letterkenny, Chris was a nominee for NUJ Sports Journalist of the Year in 2010. Honoured by the Donegal Boxing Board in 2016 for his coverage on the sport.