Cometh the hour cometh former All- Star Adrian Sweeney as Dungloe came from behind to pip Ardara, in an amazing SFC clash in Rosses Park, yesterday afternoon.
Dungloe were down by three points, 0-12 to 2-3, when Sweeney was sprung by Tony Boyle with a little over 18 minutes remaining. And with one of his first touches, 11 minutes after being introduced, he converted from 30 metres to reduce the margin to two.
That was on 28 minutes and he quickly followed up with three trademark Sweeney points, inside as many minutes to propel his side to the front for the first time and a 2-7 to 0-12 lead.
Brendan McNelis from a free and second half substitute Gareth Concarr with a fly kick from a tight angle both missed the target as Dungloe held on for one of the most amazing revivals seen in Rosses Park, in years.
Ardara led by seven points, 0-10 to 1-0 after blitzing the locals with a power packed display from John McConnell’s charges, who at times in the first 30 minutes, over ran a young Dungloe outfit that were short a number of regulars.
Shaun Sharkey, Gavin Ward and Doalty Boyle on holidays and Ciaran Sharkey and Gerard Walsh both injured were all missing from the Dungloe line-up.
Ardara looked good in the opening minutes as Martin Shovlin, Brendan Boyle, Brendan McNelis, C J Molloy and Kevin Whyte all kicking points as they raced into a 0-7 to 0-0 lead, just 11 minutes into the game.
Dungloe, who looked out of their depth physically, kicked a couple of wides before Conor Greene got a flick ahead of Declan Gallagher, in the Ardara goals, to a Darren Curran lob, on 21 minutes.
But the goal was quickly cancelled out as Ardara responded with three more white flags to go in 0-10 to 1-0 up at half-time and even at that stage licking their lips ahead of next weekend’s home clash with Naomh Conaill.
Dungloe with Darren and Barry Curran , Cory Gallagher, Martin Redmond,Adam Neilly and Conor Greene did enjoy a good deal more possession in the early stages of the second period.
But a point each from Neilly and Greene was all they had to show for the first ten minutes of the new half.
But a Darren Curran goal, on 42 minutes after good approach play from his brother Barry and Conor Greene, ignited the Dungloe fire. Cue the entry of Adrian Sweeney and his four trademark points that snatched a victory that for well over three quarters of what was an amazing game seemed most unlikely.
Dungloe: D Rodgers; J Scally, R Sweeney, O Scally; M Redmond, D Curran (1-0), M Sweeney; C Gallagher, P McGarvey; C Gallagher; N McBride, C Greene (1-2,2f), E Redmond; D McCarron, A Neilly (0-1), B Curran. Subs: A Sweeney (0-4,1,f) for E Redmond (47); L Neilly for M Sweeney (55).
Ardara: D Gallagher, N Maguire, D Gavigan (0-1), P McGrath; J R Molloy, C Classon, P O’ McNelis; B Boyle (0-1), K Doherty (0-1); B McNelis (0-1,1f), Tomás Boyle, M Shovlin (0-3); C Breslin, C J Molloy (0-1), K Whyte (0-2). Subs: G Concarr for K Whyte (48); R Malley for M Shovlin (50); K Breslin for Thomas Boyle, S Boyle for P O’ McNelis (53).
Referee: M McShane (Kilcar).