Long wait over as Loman’s crowned county champs at last

Westmeath SFC final

St Lomans 1-16

Tyrrellspass 0-15

After a wait of 50 years St Loman’s finally reached the summit of Westmeath club football when they were deservingly crowned county champions last Sunday. Having enjoyed considerable underage success over the years they have never translated this into success at senior level until now. Not surprisingly the sound of referee Niall Ward’s final whistle was greeted with scenes of wild celebration and euphoria by the blue and white side of Mullingar.

Four points was a fair reflection of their superiority on the day when they held the upper hand for much of the game. The winners held a 0-10 to 0-5 half-time lead but Tom Coffey’s side rallied after the break and five unanswered points brought them level at 0-10 apiece in the 38th minute.

With the game in the balance it was The Saints who stood up and were counted by kicking the next four points. The all-important goal arrived in the 47th minute via wing back David Whelan to give Loman’s a commanding 1-14 to 0-10 lead. From there on there was only going to be one winner and nobody in the county could begrudge the town side their day in the sun after such a long wait.

It’s never nice to lose a final but Tyrrellspass can hold their heads up high. The absence of Gavin Hoey was a serious blow to them on a day when a few of their marquee players failed to find top form.

Martin Flanagan once again reminded all in attendance that class is permanent with a noteworthy performance while Ger Egan who kicked 0-10 didn’t deserve to be on the losing side.

John Heslin finished with eight points to his name (four frees ) while Shane Dempsey caused all sorts of trouble and chipped in with 0-3. Overall Loman’s were the more balanced side.

After such a long wait it is understandable that the celebrations could last a while. Rowley is adamant however that his side will give the Leinster club championship a good shot. They have a home game on Sunday October 27 against Carlow champions Old Leighlin. The Dublin champions await the winners on November 10.

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