Carndonagh edged Illies on penalties to retain their top flight status for next season.
Illies Celtic 1 Carn FC 1
(after extra time; Carn win 5-4 on pens)
In glorious conditions at Maginn Park Illies had an early chance in the fourth minute when Liam Grant intercepted a clearance allowing Paddy Doherty to collect the ball and unleash an effort which Kyle Dougal held comfortably.
Illies took the lead on 11 minutes after great work on the right by Dominick Coyle saw his cross kneed home from six yards by the unmarked Paddy Doherty.
The next 20 minutes saw little goalmouth action with Carn having the lions share of possession but failing in the final third to create clear chances.
A great break from Adrian Donaghey Doherty on 38 minutes saw him release Coyle but he fired wide from the edge of the area.
A Liam Grant free was met by a flying Paddy Doherty header but Kyle Dougal produced a brilliant save to turn the ball behind for a corner.
Illies had the first chance of the second half on 52 minutes after Gavin Doherty crossed from the left for Adrian Donaghey Doherty whose powerful effort from the edge of the area was well parried by Dougal.
A minute later Coyle’s cross from the right found Gavin Doherty but his flick just missed the far post. Dougal made a double save to flick away Gavin Doherty’s cross before blocking Paddy Doherty’s follow up.
Carn replied and Joseph McKinney fired over from 25 yards.Carn then had a great chance on 59 minutes after McKinney threaded a ball into Cade Cooke but his close range effort was deflected over by Johnathan Noone.
But from the corner Aaron McCarron unmarked rose high to direct a header from eight yards into the bottom left hand corner.
On 77 minutes a ball into the area fell to Cade Cooke for Carn but off balance he fired wide.
Carn had another sight of goal on 86 minutes when substitute Declan McGonigle fed Ronan Doherty who laid the ball off to Shane Doherty but he dragged his effort wide.
Carn spurned a clear chance in injury time when a Declan McGonagle effort was half blocked to substitute Gert Dzerins but his side-footed effort lacked the power to trouble Noone.
In extra time a Liam Grant free from wide on the right found Michael Gallagher but his header was well saved by Dougal. There were few chances in the second period and in the shootout Carn preserved their Premier Division status while Illies must lift themselves for their play—off with Moville Celtic next Sunday.