Letterkenny Rovers needed the lottery of penalty kicks to lift the John Gorey Curran Cup at Diamond Park on Saturday evening to get the better of Gweedore Celtic.
After the game ended in a scoreless draw after extra time, Rovers won 4-1 on in the penalty shoot out.
It was Paddy Duggan's Celtic who were the quicker to settle and with Liam McFadden pulling all the strings in an impressive individual display could have gone ahead on 8 minutes but Rovers goalkeeper Sean Friel did well to get down to his right to save Ciaran McHughs long range effort.
Gweedore had further chances through Daniel McLaughlin and Michael Coll while Rovers had speculative efforts from Sean Curran and David O'Donnell while Dylan Laird must be wondering how he didnt manage to convert a super James Tourish delivered free kick with some frenetic defending from the Gaeltacht side managing to keep the game level.
In truth neither goalkeeper was severely tested in a tight first half despite lots of industry and endeavour from both sides and after Eoghan Kelly and Daniel McLaughlin exchanged efforts in the second half what could have ended up being the games turning point arrived on 79 minutes when Rovers had Igor Arriel sent off for a second yellow after clattering into Liam Wiggins.
From the resultant Micheal Roarty free kick Daniel McLaughlin should have converted with his header but he somehow put it wide and Rovers must have known it was going to be their day.
Rovers battled hard and with ten men were the better side in extratime which may have been aided by increased options from the bench although Conor McCaffertys header hit the Rovers crossbar but Anthony Gormans men could have won it late when the highly impressive second half sub Michael Gallagher shot narrowly over.
Penalties are a lottery and Rovers converted their first four through Conor O'Donnell, Eoghan Kelly, Michael Gallagher and Shane Doherty while Gweedore saw two efforts saved by Rovers captain and birthday boy Sean Friel as Rovers won the shootout 4-1 and it was an emotional Friel who accepted the cup from a proud Betty Curran.
Gweedore Celtic; Gavin Sweeney, Liam Wiggins, Conor McCafferty, Daniel McLaughlin,Conor Duggan, Micheal Roarty,Neassan Mac Giolla Bhride, Ciaran McHugh,Michael Coll, Liam McFadden, Kyran Glennon.
Sub; Michael Cutliffe for Coll 107 mins
Letterkenny Rovers; Sean Friel, Calvin O'Brien, James tourish, Eoghan Kelly, Ciaran Daffan, Sean Curran, David O'Donnell, Shane Doherty, Codey Brogan, Dylan Laird, Igor Arriel.
Subs; Michael Gallagher for Daffan 57 mins, Conor O'Donnell for David O'Donnell 67 mins, Tarlach O'Boyle for Laird 79 mins, Conor Lynch for O'Brien 90 mins, Daire Crossan for Tourish 100 mins.
Referee; Liam McLaughlin
Asst Referees; Barry Hunter, Dessie McLaughlin.
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