Under 14 Boys League Champions!

Thomas Devlin Car Sales Under 14 League Shield Final:

Glenavy 4-7 St. Enda’s 1-5

Photos by Bert Trowlen

St Joseph’s Glenavy produced their best performance of the season on Sunday evening against St Enda’s in the U14 SW League Shield Final at Aghagallon to take the title on a score line of 4-07 to 1-05.

Both sides had impressive wins in their semi-finals and would have been confident going into Sunday’s decider. St Enda’s who impressed all year in the league stages had already beaten Glenavy twice in the league, looked to be slight favourites going into the match and a large crowd gather on Sunday evening in the late sunshine in anticipation of a tight game.

It was the Glenavy lads who started brightest and dominated the early exchanges. In fact it was only through some wayward shooting that they were only 0-2 to 0-1 up at the midpoint of the first half.

However just as St. Enda’s were finding a foothold in the game, Glenavy struck with the first goal of the game. This certainly got the tails up of the Chapel Hill side and it appeared to knock the confidence of the Hightown lad’s defence. In the closing stages Glenavy’s dominance turned this advantage into further scores to lead at half time 2-04 to 0-2.

Anybody who thought the game would be over at this stage clearly hadn’t watched the St. Enda’s lads playing during the year. Half time gave their management team a chance to make some positional changes and clear instructions which had an instant reward from their players.

From the restart St. Enda’s claimed the thrown in and tore through the heart of the Glenavy defence finishing a well worked move to the back of the net. This was clearly game on and the goal sparked life into the young side and their vocal support.

Glenavy had their chances to respond instantly but the St. Enda’s defence, now with their match ups better, were contesting the ball with more intent. Clearly boosted by their early goal, St. Enda’s had the upper hand and following successive turn overs tagged on a couple of more scores to leave only a goal between the sides.

It was anybody’s game now but to their credit, the Glenavy team dug deep to stem the St Enda’s tide and from this they managed to open up their lead again with a couple of timely scores. It was from a resultant kick out that pressure was applied on the St. Enda’s defence. Glenavy turned over the ball and a piece of magnificent skill that delivered a pin point kick pass found the Glenavy full forward in space, who finished clinically to the back of the net. It was a huge turning point and Glenavy weren’t going to let this one slip from here.

Glenavy finished the game strongly with a further goal and a wonderful long range point from midfield to close the game 4-07 to 1-05.

Although the game looked up towards the end, to their credit the St. Enda’s lads fought like champions and never gave up. Credit must be given to them and their management team who represented their club proudly on the day.

As the victorious players, management and their thrilled supporters from Chapel Hill converged on the field at the final whistle all agreed this was a fine game of football played hard and fair with the Glenavy lads deserving winners in the end.