THERE were joyous scenes in Lusk last Thursday evening as local club Round Tower overcame a fine Parnell's side to claim the Conlon Cup in front of a large and enthusiastic following.
The final scoreline of 0-16 to 0-12 in favour of the hosts reflected the tightness of the occasion throughout with Towers finishing strongly to claim a famous victory.
The win was given added resonance as it secured a first senior football trophy in 20 years for Round Tower and their manager Leo Neary was justifiably proud of his charges when reflecting on a great night for the North County club.
"It was a huge boost for the club to finally win some silverware and after the juvenile section was neglected in the past, we're finally gaining our rewards for all the work that has been put in with our juvenile teams over the past 10 years or so.
"The Conlon Cup was one of our targets at the start of the year and winning it has given us something to kick on from here. We're certainly tipping in the right direction," said Neary.
With both sides in fine form throughout the year, a cracking contest was expected and both sides duly delivered a wonderful spectacle with Conor Brick opening the scoring with a 40-yard free for Tower in the second minute.
The visitors, who were unbeaten in all competitions heading into the final, struck back well and their initial dominance was rewarded as they raced three points clear by the end of the first quarter.
However, Tower remained unflustered as they gradually reeled in their opponents with points from the excellent Timmy Doyle, Ryan Caul and Kieran McKitterick ensuring they enjoyed a deserved two-point interval lead.
The hosts maintained the initiative after the break, but were dealt two body blows in quick succession as both Sean Brennan and George Leech succumbed to injury.
Despite their absence, Tower continued to defend with great discipline as the visitors exerted a great degree of pressure and both Sam Griffin and Dermot Leech excelled in the home defence as they thwarted the Parnell's attack at regular intervals.
Their talents frustrated the Coolock men and with gaps appearing at the opposite end, the hosts were allowed to stretch their advantage with Brick, John O'Neill, McKitterick, Doyle, Adam Caul, Leech and Ryan Caul all finding the target for Towers as they confirmed their four-point win.
The evening concluded with inspirational team captain Andy Moore accepting the cup on behalf of his ecstatic team-mates, with Neary hopeful Moore may collect some added silverware as the year progresses.
"We have had a very promising year so far and this win should definitely add to the confidence of the panel.
"The lads have worked very hard and it is important that we continue to drive on from this and continue to make progress in the other competitions," he said.