Plunkett returns to haunt Knockbridge
Louth SHC Final
Naomh Moninne 1-11 Knockbridge 0-11
NAOMH Moninne upset the odds to end Knockbridge's five-year reign as Louth hurling champions in Castlebellingham yesterday.
A Dermot Plunkett goal -- against the side he captained to one of those five triumphs -- proved crucial as Moninne staged a spirited second-half comeback to claim their first title since 1999. Moninne trailed by 0-7 to 0-4 at the break after Knockbridge closed out the first half with four points from Peter Brennan, Kevin McNally (two frees) and Ronan Byrne, to just one in reply from Padraig Murphy.
McNally extended the Reds' advantage after the re-start with another free and the champions still looked on course for a sixth title in a row when Darren O'Hanrahan and McNally traded scores to leave four between the sides.
However, Moninne started to wrest control and a scrambled goal from Plunkett brought them right back into it.
They dominated the final quarter, but didn't hit the front until three minutes from time when Diarmuid Murphy converted a brace of frees in quick succession to make it 1-9 to 0-11.
O'Hanrahan added another point in injury-time and when the same player was hauled down on his way to goal, Moninne captain Murphy was content to send the resulting penalty over the bar to put the seal on a famous win for the Dundalk outfit.
SCORERS - Naomh Moninne: D Murphy 0-7 (0-6f, 0-1 pen), D Plunkett 1-0, D O'Hanrahan 0-2, P Englishby, P Murphy 0-1 each. Knockbridge: K McNally 0-7 (0-6f, 0-1 '65), R Byrne 0-2 (0-2f), P Brennan, G McKeown 0-1 each.
NAOMH MONINNE -- J Connolly; S Rafferty, P Doherty, D Plunkett; B Murphy, D Murphy, G Collins; D Rafferty, D O'Hanrahan; P Englishby, O Drumm, P Murphy; S Ryan, E McArdle, A Mackin. Subs: M McGuinness for S Ryan (ht), D Byrne for P Murphy (52).
KNOCKBRIDGE - B McNally, M Wallace, T Teefy, N Byrne; C Kerrigan, R Byrne, A Wallace; P Brennan, Kevin McNally; G McKeown, D Kettle, S D'Arcy; G Kerrigan, P Dunne, S Byrne. Subs: S Kerrigan for S Byrne (36), P Kieran for S D'Arcy (51).
REF -- K Brady.