GAA | Nally stars as DkIT end a 13-year wait for All Ireland Freshers Championship27 March 2018
DkIT ended a 13-year wait to be crowned Freshers GAA All Ireland champions following an eight-point win over Mary Immaculate College in in Maynooth on Wednesday night.
Current DkIT Sports and Societies Officer Derek Crilly hit 1–8 for the college in their last victory back in 2005 and 2018’s final will be remembered for the 0–12 haul from Louth and Newtown Blues star Ross Nally.
Following on from the recent Leinster Junior Championship success of DkIT’s second team, all eyes were on managers Shane Lennon and Oisin McConville to see if they could add more silverware to the cabinet.
The opening 20 minutes saw Nally and Galway minor Barry McGoldrick rack up the majority of the scores to leave the teams level at six points apiece.
The turning point came when a fine piece of individual brilliance from DkIT’s Meath minor Cathal Finnegan saw him pick the ball up 60 metres from goal and he rounded off a superb run by placing the ball into the net with his weaker right-foot.
That gave DkIT the boost they needed and they went in six ahead at the break with Finnegan, Nally and Conor Nicholson of Dundalk Gaels adding a number of exceptional scores to leave it 1–10 to 0–7 at half time.
The local college extended their lead early in the second-half. Nally was once again at the thick of the action, linking up with Finnegan who finished with aplomb.
DkIT continued to press home their advantage and with Eoghan Callaghan, Packie Marron and Daithi McLoughlin in top form — and Nally lethal in front of the posts — there was only going to be one winner.
Monaghan star James Wilson also put in a tremendous shift throughout and showed his quality with three well worked scores to make sure of the win.
Mary Immaculate did pull back a couple of well taken goals and there might have been late drama had DkIT goalkeeper Conor Smith not made a fantastic save but DkIT saw it out and were deserving winners on the night.
DKIT: Conor Smith; Darren Luckie, Christopher O’Neill, Daire Morgan; Packie Marron, Eoghan Callaghan, James Finnegan; Conor Nicholson (0–1), Fearghal Malone; Pat Hanlon, Daithi McLoughlin, Abraham Dixon; James Wilson (0–3), Ross Nally (0–12), Cathal Finnegan (2–1). Subs: Liam Kindlon, Fergal Hennessy, Dylan Mackin, Andrew Curley, John Brogan, Graham Tully, Conor Connolly.
Sports and Societies Officer