Danske Bank Rannafast Cup final
St Patrick’s Cavan 0-13 St Michael’s Enniskillen 1-8
When Evan Kelly was red-carded in the 48th minute of this entertaining and intense Danske Bank Rannafast Cup final in Clones on Saturday, St Patrick’s Cavan looked in danger of losing a game that they controlled for large portions.
Cavan held a single point advantage when the red card was shown, 0-10 to 1-6, and the momentum was with Enniskillen who had scored the previous two points. A minute after the red card, substitute Micheal Glynn lofted over a free and then Darragh McBrien gave the Fermanagh side the lead.
However the true character of the Cavan side came through – something that often happens when a team drops to 14 players.
Daryl McGurren levelled from play on 55 minutes and as the game drifted into the four minutes of added time, the same player brought his tally to 0-6 with a pressure free.
Jack Trainor then finished Enniskillen off with a late point a few seconds before Martin Conroy blew the final whistle to set off wild scenes of celebration for Cavan’s seventh Rannafast title.
Goalie Joe Kiernan had a big part in the win, so too did full-back Paul McCabe, captain Michael Veale at midfield and of course McGurren with his accuracy up front, while Josh Largo-Ellis, Oisin Jackson and Peter Rafferty (until his injury right after half-time) were the driving forces behind Enniskillen’s brave bid.
St Patrick’s dominated the opening 20 minutes and were good value for their 0-6 to 0-2 lead. Both Enniskillen points had come from their captain Largo-Ellis early in the half in response to scores from Sean Donohue and Jack Trainor.
There then followed four points in a row, the pick of them from Fionntan O’Reilly. There was also a clear goal chance in the 20th minute when Jack Treanor was through one on one with Feidhlim O’Connor, but the St Michael’s ‘keeper was equal to the effort and that seemed to lift Enniskillen who finished the half strongly.
Eimhin Curran’s effort at a point in the 22nd minute fell short and Luca McCusker gathered well to shoot to the net. Although Daryl McGurren responded with a free, Oisin Jackson and Darragh McBrien fired over points to level the game at the break, 0-7 to 1-4.
During the third quarter, Cavan once again took the initiative with a point from Fionntan O’Reilly sandwiched between frees from McGurren. But Jackson and McBrien had responded in the 44th and 47th minutes before the sending off setting up a really tense finish.
St Patrick’s : J Kiernan, D McGoldrick, P McCabe, S Halton, A Lynch, A McManus, E Kelly, M McGahern 0-1, M Veale capt, S Donohue 0-1, D McGurren 0-6, O Brady, F O’Reilly 0-2, C Sambete, J Trainor 0-3.
Subs : S Tynan for M McGahern (48), D Rowley for S Halton (54).
St Michael’s Enniskillen : F O’Connor, B Maguire, G McGovern, L Green, O Jackson 0-2, J Horan, Josh Largo-Ellis capt. 0-2, 0-1 free, A Tierney, J McDade, L McCusker 1-0, Rian McGovern, P Rafferty, D McBrien 0-3, 0-1 free, E Curran, F Quinn
Subs: J O’Donnell for B Maguire (8), C Murphy for P Rafferty (32), M Glynn 0-1 free for L McCusker (40), J Tierney for R McGovern (52), R McGovern for O Jackson (57).
Referee : Martin Conroy (Tyrone).