Drumragh U16 boys won the championship title on Saturday, completing the double having won the league earlier in the year.
The result means that they finish the year unbeaten, and every player and the management deserve a massive amount of praise for a fantastic season.
They showed brilliant determination and played some excellent football to win the final with a couple of late goals.
Their opponents on Saturday, Stewartstown, made the quicker start and opened up an early lead. They kicked a couple of good scores from play and were also on target from a free. They put Drumragh under a lot of pressure in the opening 15 minutes, but the defence held up, typified by Shea Mullin, Lorcan McGrath and Connor McLaughlin, whose brave blocks prevented Stewartstown from increasing their lead. Drumragh goalkeeper Matthew O’Doherty also made an important save during the early stages.
Drumragh were carrying a threat of their own though. Lorcan McGrath forced the Stewartstown goalkeeper into a great save after a strong run through the middle of the defence, and they were also unlucky not to score from a few attacks following good play from Dylan Lowry, Conor Gormley and Oran Barrett.
James Fyffe got Drumragh’s first score of the game with a composed finish after Conor Fyffe, Dara Cox and Aidan McCarney had combined to create the opportunity. Another strong run from Lorcan McGrath was ended by a foul from a Stewartstown defender, and Conor Gormley made no mistake from the free that followed. A foul on Turlough Collins then allowed Aidan McCarney to bring the teams level with a brilliant long-range free.
Stewartstown answered back with a couple of points, giving them a two-point lead at half-time.
The sides swapped frees at the beginning of the second half – Aidan McCarney on target for Drumragh – with Lorcan McGrath, Matthew Barrett and Connor McLaughlin continuing to play well in the defence when put under pressure.
Turlough Collins hit a super score from out on the right after good play from Conor Gormley and Shay Donnell. And while Stewartstown replied with a point, Turlough and Aidan McCarney brought the teams level again with excellent points from play.
Stewartstown went up to the other end of the field for the game’s first goal and quickly added a point. But Drumragh didn’t panic and got to work getting back in the game with the help of a number of subs.
A foul on Dylan Lowry allowed Aidan McCarney to send the ball over the bar from a placed ball. And Drumragh were then soon level. Frankie Monk won the ball back, and it was soon launched into the forward line. Ryan Baxter did brilliantly to flick the ball into the path of Conor Gormley. Conor took it past a defender before drilling an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net for a fantastic goal.
Things were to get better for Drumragh when Ryan Baxter scored their second goal, with Dylan Lowry and Ronan Bresnhan involved in the build-up, as the game entered injury time.
Stewartstown replied with a point, and went in search of a goal. But the defence kept them out and Drumragh were crowned double winners.
Congratulations to everyone involved.
SCORERS: Conor Gormley 1-1, Aidan McCarney 0-4, Ryan Baxter 1-0, Turlough Collins 0-2, James Fyffe 0-1
TEAM: Matthew O’Doherty, Matthew Barrett, Lorcan McGrath, Shea Mullin, Ryan Baxter, Connor McLaughlin, Conor Fyffe, Conor Gormley, Aidan McCarney, James Fyffe, Oran Barrett, Dylan Lowry, Dara Cox
SUBS: Callum McNamee, Ronan Bresnahan, Shay Donnell, Oisin Walsh, Sean O’Donnell, Aaron Duncan, Ryan Colgan, Niall Gormley, Joseph Taggart, Mark O’Neill, Tiernan O’Donnell, Ben McCullagh, Luke Hagan, Ollie Hagan, Padraig Gormley, Niall Burt, Sean Boyle, Matt Gallagher, Ronan Baxter, Connor McGale, Che Corry, Michael Forde