Killinarden Community School 2: 2 St. Kevin’s College (A.E.T.) (5-4 penalties).
A gritty and determined performance saw Killinarden Community School beat the defending champions in sudden death penalties to clinch a dramatic win in the final of the U14’s Dublin Metropolitan League last Friday (14th March) at Marlay Park.
Having dominated much of the match with slick passing moves, KCS were seemingly on course for a healthy one-nil victory courtesy of Lee Dempsey’s first half opener.
It was a much deserved lead for the team, which had been dealt a blow just five minutes in when pacey winger, Gary Sutton was forced off with a suspected hamstring injury.
But with just 10 minutes of normal time remaining, the KCS defence was caught cold.
Putting together their best spell of a wind-swept match, St. Kevin’s made their pressure count, snatching an equaliser.
Within moments of extra-time getting underway, KCS fell behind to another well taken goal.
As in previous ties, however, KCS took to the challenge, piling forward in numbers and controlling the game.
Their pressure appeared to have been rewarded early in the second period of extra-time when a well taken free kick was bundled home from the rebound only to be ruled out for offside.
Less than a minute later and from a similar position, yet another free kick was pushed away by the St. Kevin’s keeper only to be smashed back into the net. KCS’s celebrations were short lived though as the referee blew again for offside.
It was a case of third time lucky with three minutes remaining as KCS fired home a free kick from the edge of the area, pausing briefly to check there was no infringement before launching into celebrations.
With both teams scoring their opening penalties, KCS missed their second, allowing St. Kevin’s to open up a lead.
A series of well taken penalties followed, leaving St. Kevin’s with the decider, which narrowly flew wide.
KCS scored their first sudden death penalty only to see St. Kevin’s miss, prompting wild celebrations from a team which had fought doggedly at each stage of the competition.
Just the previous Monday, KCS had pulled off an enthralling victory against Larkin College, twice coming from behind to win 8-6 in extra-time, following a series of league wins over St. Joseph’s Fairview, Riversdale Community College and Palmerstown Community School.
Coaches for the team were teachers, David Murphy and Peter Kelly.