Stunning show by St. James'
St. James' 7-13 Kilrush 2-4
A stunning performance from St. James' dynamic and talented attack proved too much for Kilrush to handle as they claimed the New Ross Standard Under-13 football Division 3 championship title in St. Patrick's Park, Enniscorthy.
The Ramsgrange side lost the match-up between the sides in the Division 3 hurling semi by the minimum and were determined not to leave the field with the same feeling after this county final.
There was no fear of that as St. James' raced out of the blocks, played some sensational football, and were almost impossible to stop. As gameplans go, it wasn't exactly complicated but it sure was effective.
Paul Walsh was the focal point, as almost everything went through the Jimmies' full-forward. He hardly lost a one-on-one all evening, everything stuck to him, but the most impressive aspect of his play was his intelligent use of the ball.
The energy was provided further back, as Myles Hewlett was excellent in midfield and there was pretty much no way to stop Jayden Cheevers and Josh Kyle Delaney in this form, they were that dominant.
It was tough for Kilrush, as they were never given a minute to settle against a Ramsgrange side in top form. They will have a chance to bounce back and take the hurling title in the coming week when they face Ballinastragh Gaels.
Adam Donohoe poked home an early goal against the breeze but his side were under the cosh for the next 20 minutes. Dean Black made some phenomenal saves in the Kilrush goal but eventually Aaron McPhillips (two), Delaney and Walsh all found a way past his heroic efforts.
Cheevers had all eight of his side's points by the break but Kilrush gave themselves a little hope when Seán Kenny found the net late in the half and Robert Quinn kicked a fine point (4-8 to 2-2).
Adam Donohoe started the second-half with a classy point and Kenny followed suit, but soon St. James' took over again.
Delaney netted twice more and Cheevers notched his eleventh point as the champions built a 6-13 to 2-4 lead at the end of the third quarter.
To their credit, Kilrush battled hard all the way to the end, they only gave up one more score, Delaney's fourth major after good work by substitute Ronan Shannon.
The Gorey District side put on a bit of late pressure but couldn't spoil the St. James' party with any more scores.
St. James': Seánie Dunne; Finn O'Connor, Joseph O'Brien, Liam Walsh; Dan Nolan, Cosmo Hewlett, Caolan Costello; Myles Hewlett, Eoin Shannon; Sam Foley, Jayden Cheevers (capt., 0-11, 4 frees, 1 '45), Josh Kyle Delaney (4-1); Aaron McPhillips (2-0), Paul Walsh (1-1), Danny Costello. Subs. (rolling) - Lincoln Walsh, Ronan Shannon, Danny McPhillips, Darren Walsh, Arran Whelan.
Kilrush: Dean Black; Ben Walsh, Brian Kirwan, Páiric Guinan; Niall Mimnagh, David Kirwan, Ryan Bailey; Darragh Dee, Seán Kenny (joint capt., 1-2, 1-1 frees); Calum Ryan, Robert McCrea (joint capt.), Conor Dillon; Adam Donohoe (1-1), Robert Quinn (0-1), Michael Kinsella. Subs. (rolling) - Cian Lancaster, Dara O'Toole, Mark Devereux, Tom Mackey, Conal Butler, Oisín Farrell, Dara Moynihan, Thomas Kirwan.
Referee: Francis Neville (Shelmaliers).