GAA | Pat’s overcome the Brides to book their place in Sheelan Cup final

Paddy Sheelan Cup Semi-Final | St Patrick’s 2–9 St Brides 1–10

St Patrick’s will meet Mattock Rangers in this year’s Paddy Sheelan Cup final after overcoming St Brides in Lordship on Tuesday night.

The hosts started the better with two early points from a couple of ex-county stars. Paddy Keenan converted a free before Dessie Finnegan slotted over after a long surging run from his defence.

The Brides, however, took control of matters after this and notched up three points without reply, two free kicks from Aaron Hoey, either side of a Kevin Hearty effort.

Keenan equalised with a long range effort on 15 minutes but the Brides finished the half strongly with unanswered scores from Shane Devin (0–2), another pointed free from Aaron Hoey and an effort from James Costelloe.

Two late scores, one from Keenan again and a fisted effort from substitute Evan White left just two in it at the break, 0–7 to 0–5 in favour of the visitors.

Keenan pointed a free kick just after the restart to leave the minimum between the sides but St Brides upped the gears after this and raised the white flag three more times.

Again, the trusted left boot of Hoey was responsible for all converted free kicks to put the visitors in the driving seat with 20 minutes to play.

Tempers flared a number of times after this with referee Paul Burke brandishing five yellow cards to the hosts.

Pat’s needed to engineer something to pull the game out of the fire and they brought on another ex-county star, Ray Finnegan, who made an impact almost straight away when he fisted a ball to the net after it broke favourably to him.

The goal came very much against the run of play and it proved to be a lifeline for the Pat’s who followed it up with an equaliser from Cathal Grogan with 51 minutes played.

The Knockbridge side unravelled after that and Aidan McCann put his side ahead for only the second time in the game when he dissected the posts.

And the match was put beyond all doubt two minutes later when full forward Conor Grogan slotted home a loose ball after being initially denied by Brides custodian, Darren Breen.

St Brides didn’t have the same good fortune at the other end and two goalbound efforts were brilliantly saved by Rory Duffy with the subsequent rebounds dispatched to safety.

McCann concluded the scoring for the hosts with an insurance point and although Kevin Hearty slotted home a penalty kick deep into added time to leave two points between the teams, it was Pat’s who held on to book their place in the final.

ST PATRICK’S: Rory Duffy; Daniel Rice, Dessie Finnegan (0–1), Alan O’Connor; Kevin White, Patrick Kirk, Ross Murphy; Paddy Keenan (0–4), Thomas McCann; Sean McGeough, Cathal Grogan (0–1), Aidan McCann (0–2), Jason Woods, Conor Grogan (1–0), Patrick Lynch. Subs: Evan White (0–1) for P Lynch, Ray Finnegan (1–0) for S McGeough, Aaron Rogers for J Woods.

ST BRIDES: Darren Breen; Ronan Bailey, Cillian Kirk, Laurence Steen; Padraic Mackin, Andrew Smyth, Stephen Kettle; Mark Hoey, Alan Dunne; James Costelloe (0–1), Aaron Hoey (0–6), Shane Devin (0–2): Sean Marry, Kevin Hearty (1–1), Sean Brennan. Subs: Conaill Devin for S Brennan, Ciaran Deane for S Devin, Gareth Hall for J Costelloe.

REFEREE: Paul Burke.

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