Johnville – 1
The last domestic cup final of the season, and indeed the last Junior League game of the season was played in Ozier Park on Wednesday night last and it provided plenty of entertainment for the large crowd.
Following the thrilling 90 minutes it was the Dungarvan travelling contingent who went back to the west of the county celebrating a fine victory.
Having just lost out on promotion this was some sort of consolation for the Old Borough outfit. Johnville went into the game as underdogs but they certainly played their part in an exciting match and there is no doubt that the management team at St Martin’s Park have a lot of young talent to work with for next season.
That fact was proved when their midfield player Ethan Hurley was selected as ‘Man of the Match’. This was the 22nd playing of the Sheridan Cup final.
Prior to 1993 it was called ‘The Raytex Cup’.
Following the game Elaine Walsh- Sheridan, Ray Sheridan and Betty Sheridan were present to present the trophy to Kevin Walsh the Dungarvan captain.
Johnville had the first chance of the game on two minutes when Willie Chester sent over a cross from the left that broke to Ethan Hurley but his shot from the edge of the penalty area was tipped around the posts by Dungarvan keeper Emmet Gaffney.
Hurley was in the thick of the action when he latched onto the ball from the resulting Gary Kelly corner kick from the right but this time the midfielder saw his cracking effort from 25 yards flash inches over the crossbar of keeper Gaffney.
Johnville keeper Robbie Ridgard came to his sides rescue on eight minutes when Gavin Crotty slipped the ball into the path of Piotr Goch on the left-side of the area but his left-footed effort was well kept out by the netminder.
It was Johnville defender Tony Winters who in the right place at the right time sixty seconds later when he did superbly well to clear a close range effort from Shane Kelly off the line after Gavin Crotty had sent in a dangerous corner from the right.Gary Kelly went close to putting Johnville in front on 34 minutes when he picked up possession of the ball out on the right but he fired into the side-netting.
It took a brilliant save from Johnville keeper Ridgard to deny Dungarvan United the breakthrough goal with the final action of the first half when Shane Kelly latched onto the ball on the right side of the area but his effort for the far corner was superbly turned around the posts.
Dungarvan United did strike for the opening goal of the game on 53 minutes when a superb through ball down the left channel from Tony Fitzgerald released Gavin Crotty and he fired an unstoppable left-footed effort past a helpless Robbie Ridgard to the far bottom corner of the net.
Anthony Flynn could have levelled the tie for Johnville within seconds of that goal when he burst into the penalty area but his shot was straight at Emmet Gaffney before a stunning equaliser arrived on 58 minutes when Sean White found a way past Gaffney with a magnificent free kick from the halfway line after a foul on Bulvais.
Gavin Crotty could have regained the lead for the Old Borough outfit 60 seconds later when he cracked a shot off the crossbar before David Condon should have put his side in front on 84 minutes but he fired a close range effort off the post when he should have hit the target.
The winning goal did arrive for the team from Kilrush Park in the final minute of normal time when Shane Kelly released substitute Keith Landers down the left-side of the area and he beat keeper Ridgard with a low left-footed shot. Christy Power almost put through his own net in injury time but there was no reprieve for the city side and the cup made its way back to Dungarvan.It is worth nothing that the club from the west were the second winners of the Sheridan Cup back in 1994.
DUNGARVAN UNITED: Emmet Gaffney, Kevin Walsh, Tony Fitzgerald, Patrick Walsh, Christy Power, Shane Lannon, David Condon, Shane Kelly, Piotr Goch (Fionn Hallihan `65), Gavin Crotty, Lee Hyslop (Keith Landers `77).
JOHNVILLE: Robbie Ridgard, Tony Winters, Willie Chester, Sean White, Neil Sheridan, Ethan Hurley, Valdo Bulvais, Gavin Jacob, Anthony Flynn, Pat Brown, Gary Kelly.
REFEREE: Noel Purcell.
ASSISTANTS: Jimmy McGrath and John Ferncombe.