DOWNINGS FELL SHORT in their bid to win the Comórtas Peile na Gaeltachta Junior title at Pearse Park in Ardara in this afternoon’s rescheduled final.
Downings 0-5 Aran Islands 2-3
After the competition was forced to be postponed in a torrential downpour in June, today’s first match brought a healthy crowd and it was the Galway team who will be taking the trophy home this evening.
The inabilities of Andy Connor’s Downings side to score from play over the course of the hour in the swirling wind was their Achilles heel and two first half goals from Aonghus Ó hIarnáin ultimately paid post to any chance of a Donegal double, with Kilcar and Naomh Conaill due to meet in the senior decider.
Aran Islands, therefore, retained the title they won in their own county, at Moycullen 16 months ago.
Ó hIarnáin slapped home the first goal past Conor McBride on just seven minutes when he was found in space by Peader Einne Seioghe.
Then, the same trio of players were involved in the second goal five minutes before the break.
This time, McBride saved from Seioghe but Ó hIarnáin netted the rebound. Ardan Island were 2-2 to 0-3 in front at the break, with Aaron McClafferty scoring all of Downings’ first half total.
There were only three points scored in the second half with McClafferty and Lorcan Connor popping over frees for Downings and Tailear Ó Flatheartha scoring a fine point on the turn.
Aran Islands: Darach Ó Braionáin; Padraig Ó Domhnaill, Dairmuid Ó h-Alluin, Cillian Seioghe; Stiofán Ó hiarnáin, Ciarnan Ó Domhnall, Cian Ó hIarnáin; Eoin De Blacam, Colm Ó Braoinain; Tailear Ó Flatheartha (0-2,1f), Eoin Poill (0-1,1f), Cillian Ó Conghaile; Peader Einne Seioghe, Aonghus Ó hIarnáin (2-0), Oisin Ó hIarnain. Subs: Cealán Seioghe for O Ó hIarnáin (5).
Downings: Conor McBride; Matthew Coyle, David Hay, Allen Pasoma; Kevin Doherty, Kevin McGee, Ben McNutt; Shaun McBride, James Lee McBride; Aaron McClafferty (0-4, 4fs), Lorcan Connor (0-1,1f), Oisin Boyce; Colin Gallagher, Gary ‘Ban’ McClafferty, Patrick McGroddy. Subs: Finghin McClafferty and Ben McBride for McNutt and Pasoma (half-time); Shane McClafferty for A McClafferty (40, black card), Sean McGinley for S McBride (47), Eric Roberts for Doherty (52, black card).
Referee: Martin McShane (Ardara).