Templenoe reach promised land

AIB All-Ireland JFC final - Templenoe (Kerry) 4-13 Ardnaree-Sarsfields (Mayo) 1-10: A hat-trick of goals from Stephen O’Sullivan, allied with key contributions from Brian Crowley and the Spillane brothers, secured a famous victory for Templenoe in the AIB All-Ireland junior club final.

O’Sullivan struck in the 17th, 32nd, and 50th minutes to crush the Mayo challenge, though Crowley’s goal just before the interval was crucial, at a time when there were just three points between the sides.

That was despite the six-point contribution from Killian and Adrian Spillane — sons of former Kerry star Tom — with Killian in particular proving too hot to handle for the Ardnaree defenders.

Ardnaree captain, Eoin McCormack kept his side in touch from placed balls and substitute Ronan O’Malley had a goal within seconds of his 20th-minute introduction, as a seven-point gap was whittled down to two.

Killian Spillane made it three with a wonderful score though before Crowley had the simple task to finish to the net after a tremendous team move.

When O’Sullivan found the net for his second time early in the second half, there was no way back for Ardnaree. The westerners struggled to make any inroads on the Templenoe rearguard in the second half and O’Sullivan completed his hat-trick, when breaking a high ball down to Cian Hallissey, taking the return and slipping inside his marker before unleashing a low shot to the far corner.

Pat Spillane, son of the eight-time All-Ireland winner of the same name, was introduced and added a point, as did the excellent Crowley, and though the industrious Martin Rafter and McCormack raised white flags late on, the celebrations had already begun in stands.

“We started the year working hard and we said this was our last step,” said O’Sullivan. “We’d do it and we’d win it.

“We’re in the middle of nowhere. We have a rural population of less than 500. This is a special bunch of players and we knew if we put the work in, we’d keep going and we’d win the All-Ireland.”

Scorers for Templenoe:

S O’Sullivan 3-1; B Crowley 1-3; K Spillane 0-4(3fs); A Spillane 0-2; D Cahalane, P Spillane, T Doyle (45) 0-1 each.

Scorers for Ardnaree-Sarsfields:

E McCormack 0-6(5fs, 1 45); R O’Malley 1-0; M Rafter 0-2; R Clarke, C Walsh 0-1 each.

TEMPLENOE:

A Sheehan, K O’Neill, T Morley, M Hallissey, P Clifford, J Spillane, G Crowley, S Sheehan, A Spillane, B Crowley, C Hallissey, D Cahalane, K Spillane, T Doyle, S O’Sullivan.

Subs:

P Spillane for Cahalane (52), J Rice for M Hallissey (54), S Cremin for Clifford for (57), J Holland for O’Sullivan (59), J Moriarty for O’Neill.

ARDNAREE-SARSFIELDS:

B Ginty, Conor Naylor, Colm Naylor, C Cawley, M McCormack, P Lacken, S Timlen, S Tighe, M Rafter, N Beattie, R Clarke, C Noone, R Doherth, C Walsh, E McCormack.

Subs:

R O’Malley for Noone (20), I Clarke for Cawley (ht), J Timlin for Walsh (34), B Fitzpatrick for Colm Naylor (39), J Egan for R Clarke (48), K McCarron for Beattie (48).

Referee:

N Cullen (Fermanagh).



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