NEWCASTLE WEST secured back-to-back U21 Premier football titles for the first time in 31 years thanks to an impressive 1-7 to 0-6 win against Monaleen in Askeaton on Sunday afternoon. (Final Score: Newcaslte West 1-7 Monaleen 0-6)
In a repeat of last year’s final, in which Newcastle West won 0-9 to 0-8, a first half goal from Dylan Whelan proved to be the difference as the West Limerick club wrapped up their 11th U21 title.
Monaleen started the brighter of the two sides but the city club failed to capitalise on their early dominance, recording three wides in the opening five minutes.
Jamie Power had opened the scoring for Monaleen but Newcastle West drew level with a Dylan Whelan free and moments later the lively Bryan Nix slotted over to put his side ahead, a lead that John Collins’ side held until the final whistle.
Both teams exchanged points before Whelan found the back of the net on twenty minutes to put four points between the sides.
A Mark O’Dwyer free made it a three-point game at the break, a half in which Monaleen recorded a total of nine wides compared to none from Newcastle West.
Monaleen came out all guns blazing in the second half and points from Donnacha O’Dalaigh and Niall Loughran narrowed the deficit to two.
The Magpies’ first point of the second half came with eights to go as Nix scored a superb point after linking up with Diarmuid Kelly and Niall McAuliffe.
Three late red cards for Monaleen reduced the Castletroy men to 12 players and three further frees from Kelly (2) and Nix ensured a four-point margin victory for Newcastle West.
NEWCASTLE WEST: Dylan Whelan (1-1, one free); Bryan Nix (0-3, one free); Diarmuid Kelly (0-2, two frees); Niall McAuliffe (0-1),
MONALEEN: Mark O’Dwyer (0-2, two frees); Donnacha O’Dalaigh (0-2, one free); Niall Loughran, Jamie Power (0-1 each)
Newcastle West: Ronan St. John; Oisin Brennan, Michael Cremin, Jody Woulfe; Ruadhan O’Connor, Colm Foley, Darragh Fox; Seamus Hurley, Killian Brouder; Brian Foley, Diarmuid Kelly, Niall McAuliffe; Lee Woulfe (capt.), Dylan Whelan, Bryan Nix.
Subs: Jack Downey for Killian Brouder (37 mins); Ben Finnegen for Dylan Whelan (41 mins).
Monaleen: James Regan Magnier; Peter Cusack, Davin Moloney, Eoin O’Shea; Aaron Kennedy, Eoghan Carew (capt.), Sam Burns; Darren Golden O’Mahony, Cathal McCarthy; Cathal Crew, Niall Loughran, Mark O’Dwyer; Jamie Power, Jack Canny, Alan Nicholas.
Subs: Donnacha O’Dalaigh for Jamie Power (27 mins); Shane Donegan for Cathal Carew (h/t); Daniel Hession for Darren Golden O’Mahony (42 mins); Ger Clancy for Niall Loughran (45 mins); Dara Neville for Mark O’Dwyer (50 mins)
Referee: Jonathan Hayes (St Senans)