St Fechin's 2-16 Knockbridge 2-09

Having lost three finals in succession, St. Fechin's made it back-to-back Louth senior hurling titles with a commanding seven point victory over Knockbridge at Páirc Uí Mhuirí in Dunleer.

The win remarkably marked their first win in the championship this season having reached the final with a draw against Naomh Moninne in a three team round robin of all the hurling teams in the Wee county.

The route to the showpiece didn’t deter the champions thoughts in the opening stages.

The reigning champions roared out of the blocks with two goals inside the opening seven minutes of action. County player Paul Mathews found the net first with a sumptuous effort and then set up corner forward Barry Devlin for the second.

The Lory Meagher winner was simply sensational on the day and propelled his side to victory.

Knockbridge started with six players from last seasons final and weren’t for turning and hung in the contest thanks to a brace of excellent Robert Wallace efforts. The wing forward tried in vain all afternoon to get his side going.

Mathews added to his tally with a brace before county footballer Seán Marry lashed home a tap down from Knockbridge full forward Gareth Hall. The goal did not have the required effect as Ronan Byrne’s side chugged and allowed Fechins to open up a four point gap at the turn 2-09 to 1-08.

Midfielder Danny Morgan pointed upon resumption that began what was a scrappy stop start second half.

Sean Hodgins struck from a narrow angle to take the lead to six and that would be halved seconds later when Wallace found the net.

Trying to control the game, St. Fechins were caught napping and Marry pounced to steal the ball in the centre of the defence and found lively Wallace, who buried to the net. Again, however, the goal did not inspire and bar a Shane Fennell free shortly afterwards Knockbridge did not register a score.

Termonfeckin free taker Paddy Lynch duly took the sting out of the game with three of the five unanswered points that sealed the final.

Having led by seven after seven minutes that would be the winning margin leaving joint-captains Cormac McAuley and Peter Fortune to raise the Paddy Kelly cup for the fourth time in the clubs history.

St Fechin's: Rory Morrissey; Conor Higgins, Oisin Byrne, Cormac McAuley; Conor Mathews, Peter Fortune; David Stephenson; Donal Ryan (0-01), Danny Morgan (0-02); Paddy Lynch (0-08, 0-06f), Seaghan Conneely (0-01), Sean Hodgins (0-01); Barry Devlin (1-00), Paul Mathews (1-02), Sean Kerrisk (0-01).

Subs: John Crosbie for Devlin (36) Ross Berkery for Hodgins (54)

Knockbridge: Conor Kerrigan; Michael Keane, Adam Plunkett, Ronan Mulholland; Andrew Smyth, Stephen Kettle, Rickey McKeown (0-02, 0-02f); Ben Goss Kierans, Liam Molloy; Robert Wallace (1-03), Sean Marry (1-00), David Kettle; Shane Fennell (0-02, 0-01f, 0-01’65), Gareth Hall (0-02), Stephen Hoey

Subs: James Costelloe for Smyth (27), Peter Brennan for Costelloe (42), Neil Thornton for Fennell (51), Gavin Kerrigan for B Goss Kierans (56), Ronan Byrne for D Kettle (58)