For the first time in their history Omagh CBS secured back-to-back Danske Bank MacRory Cup titles thanks to a six-point success over Tyrone rivals St. Patrick’s Academy Dungannon.
Defender Brian Gallagher was a worthy recipient of the man of the match award, the Dromore man one of nine Omagh players who were starting their first MacRory Cup Final.
The experience of the six survivors from last season can’t be underestimated though as apart from their leadership qualities they also weighed in with 1-13 of their 1-18 tally.
Ruairi McCullagh pulled the strings from centre half forward finishing with 0-6 to his name while inside him Liam Og Mossey landed four crucial points, all in the second half.
Mossey looked a real livewire throughout and was a constant threat every time he had possession, but he heaped praise on McCullagh as well as admitting that scores proved difficult to come by throughout most of the first half.
“Ruairi is one of the best players that I have ever played with and everything up front goes through him,” said Mossey.
“The amount of times that he can find you with a pass is unbelievable and we work well together, he is key to our team.
“In the first half we found it difficult to get scores and that was down to the Dungannon defence as well as ourselves taking poor shots.
“We finished the half strongly with a few scores and picked up where we had left off on the restart, but we knew that they would fightback just as they had done in previous games. It was very tight throughout for most of the game and in fairness they made us work hard for it.”
Mossey had opened the second half scoring and soon Omagh were five clear, but a Conor Holmes goal took the Academy back into it and when Matthew Quinn kicked a 50th minute equaliser they looked like the side with all the momentum.
In the final ten minutes though Omagh outscored their opponents 1-5 to 0-2 with Mossey crucially giving them the lead again before Charlie Donnelly’s attempt for a point finished up in the net.
“When they got that goal, it was up to us to respond and we didn’t panic and thankfully we got a few scores that got us over the line,” said Mossey.
“Charlie’s goal couldn’t have come at a better time for us and while it may have been a bit of a fluke it was a massive score for us as it gave us a bit of a lead again which was needed.”
Omagh had lost sizeable leads in the second half in both the quarter finals and semi-finals before having to hang on to wins and Mossey said they were determined to play better after the break this time around.
“That was our main goal today as in the previous two games we just couldn’t get going in the second half and it almost cost us.
“When they came from five down to level, we held our composure and it’s just brilliant to have done back to back titles.”