Kildalkey NS’s Liam Collins is tackled by Baconstown’s Cillian O’Reilly during the Boys Div 2 final at Pairc Tailteann on Sunday. Photo: David Mullen/

Cumann na mBunscol Finals: Davis goal crucial as Kildalkey impress in Pairc showdown


More renowned as a hurling hot bed Kildalkey NS claimed just their second football title when they edged out Baconstown in a thrilling Boys Div 2 final at Pairc Tailteann on Sunday.

Baconstown looked in a strong position when their good finish to the opening half put them in the driving seat, but Kildalkey, with the wind at their backs, dominated the second-half and deservedly claimed the spoils with Cillian Davis's close range goal proving to be the difference.

Scores proved difficult to come by in the early stages as both sides defended superbly.

Baconstown did get the ball rolling in the second minute when Rhys King converted a free, but Kildalkey played well against the wind and soon found themselves in front with a brace of points from the lively DJ McCarthy.

King restored parity when he fired over despite being closely marked, but again Kildalkey responded with a pair of scores, both frees from Cormac Prior, to lead 0-4 to 0-2 in the 15th minute.

King's second converted free closed the gap to the mimimum, then Baconstown received a double boost in the form of two goals in the space of a minute.

Oscar Boggan's up-and-under was caught in the glare of the sunlight, but Jayden Farrell reacted best to palm the ball to the net and seconds later Michael Flynn's long free deceived the Kildalkey defence again and nestled in the net.

Eoghan Casey did pull a point back for Kildalkey from a free, but Baconstown were in control at half-time with a 2-3 to 0-5 lead.

That control quickly turned in Kildalkey's favour as they laid seige on the Baconstown goals, but they hit four wides in the early stages that threatened their prospects.

Once they found their range Kildalkey were impressive with captain Henry Muldoon getting them going when he blasted over a half decent goal chance.

It took Kildalkey 14 minutes of the second-half to get level as they slowly, but surely, ate into Baconstown's lead with points from Muldoon, Casey (free) and an exceptional score from Kealan Sheerin making it 0-9 to 2-3.

It was only then that Baconstown started to perform in the second period, but their threatened rally was quelled when Davis finished the crucial goal to make it 1-9 to 2-3.

Michael Flynn did close the gap with a point, but Kildalkey had the last word with another Casey free as they held on to claim their first football title since 2017.

Kildalkey NS - Eoin Corrigan; Jack Canty, Kealan Sheerin (0-1), Harry McMahon; Samuel Dolan, Jack Kenny, Harry Kearns; Cormac Prior (0-2 frees), Lucas Heverin; Henry Muldoon (0-2), DJ McCarthy (0-2), Liam Collins; Jack Carroll, Eoghán Casey (0-3 frees), Cillian Davis (1-0). Seán McNamara, Levin Pohle McNamara, Laoise Hayes, Brian Connor, Luke Walsh Gibbons, Cian Ryan, Jacob Mannering, Matthew Hand, Andrii Chornyi, David Hamill, Rían O’Dea. Mentors - Ronan Treanor, Chloe McMahon, Nodlag O’Neill-Forde.

Baconstown NS - Kyle Kavanagh; Ben Dixon, Cormac Dunne, Cillian O’Reilly; Liam Flynn, Michael Flynn (1-1 1-0 free), Will Doherty; Kealan Sharkey, Seán Enright; Ciarán McEnroe Murtagh, Rhys King (0-3 two frees), Charlie Healy; Thomas Flynn, Jayden Farrell (1-0), Oscar Boggan. Billy Flynn, Matthew Bagnall, Anna Cole, Emma Wall, Sara Bagnall, Johnny Connolly, James Cody, Thomas Healy, Caiden Massey, Greg Doran, Dan Gilsenan, Rhys Duffy, Archie Dunne, Ethgan Beggs. Mentor - Cathal Fenton.

Referee - Padraig Farrell (St Oliver Plunkett's NS, Navan).