IT WAS second time lucky as North End United finally got their hands on the Mock Lawlor Cup.
One year on from losing the final to Freebooters, the Wexford men made sure they left with the silverware after an entertaining battle with Tipperary’s Clonmel Celtic.
Chief to United’s success was goalkeeper Lee Walker. The netminder saved one penalty and then scored the winner as a tight game on the Fair Green was finally settled by spot kicks.
Celtic, who played some good football on their way to the final, took the lead on nine minutes when Paul Kennedy cheekily lobbed Walker from the corner of the box. However, parity was restored in the 22nd minute when Shane Dempsey clipped a free-kick from the half-way line all the way to the net.
Clonmel went back in front on the hour, midfielder David Joyce squeezing a tight shot home from on the end line. However, a resolute North End were level again within 15 minutes, Dempsey grabbing his and United’s second with a vicious shot from the edge of the box.
The drama continued into the penalty shoot-out as all 10 regulation spot kicks hit the net, but it was advantage North End when Walker stopped Craig Condon’s effort. He then left the line to take the 12th kick, lashing it past his opposite number David Cummins to capture the cup.