Junior Team of the Year – Defenders

Sean Finnegan (Belleek)

The 18-year-old had a dream breakthrough season for Belleek as he helped his club reach the promised land.

Finnegan often lined up against the best forwards in the division and held his own at all times.

The youngster also shot forward to get on the scoring chart, finishing the season with 0-2 to his name.

Photo Credit: Belleek

Ryan Duffy (Crossmaglen II)

Ryan Duffy was the standout defender in the black and amber in their run to the Junior Championship Final.

Gareth O’Neill’s go to man-marker, Duffy excelled in this role, limiting the influence of Davy McCreesh (Derrynoose) and Drew McVerry (Belleek).

The full back was part of a Crossmaglen rear-guard that didn’t concede a goal through their three championship outings.

Photo Credit: John Merry

Patrick Quinn (Derrynoose)

Not the end to the season Derrynoose would have wanted and they will feel they could have got to the showpiece.

Quinn was outstanding throughout their campaign and was a real driving force as well as a super defender for his side.

His goal against Killeavy got Brian Hamilton’s men out of jail while he also got on the scoresheet against Newtown.

Photo Credit: John Merry

Barry McGuirk (Dorsey)

The Dorsey defender was named The Sideline Eye Player of the Week for his heroics against Redmond O’Hanlon’s.

Dorsey then pushed the eventual champions Belleek right to the end of their semi-final and McGuirk was part of that solid defence.

McGuirk was one of the key man-markers in the Dorsey defence as they saw off Thomas Davis and O’Hanlon’s to reach the last four.

Photo Credit: Sally Lennon

Shane Quinn (Belleek)

Stood tall for Belleek as they ended 20 years of hurt to finally become Junior Champions for the first time since 2001.

Quinn left his best performance for last as he was exceptional in the showpiece as Belleek defeated favourites Crossmaglen IIs.

His sweeper performance denied The Rangers any space in their forward division, and he throw his body on the line with some terrific blocks.

Photo Credit: John Merry

Liam Blessing (Crossmaglen II)

The Crossmaglen captain was a real leader in the black and amber as they marched to the Junior decider.

He excelled in his plus-one role and turned over several attacks throughout the championship campaign.

Will be disappointed not to have gotten his hands on the Sean Quinn Cup, but still had a super season for his side.

Photo Credit: John Merry

Pauric McNaughton (Derrynoose)

Returned to the Derrynoose line up after tearing his ACL against Forkhill in the 2020 Junior Championship.

Was a welcomed addition to Brian Hamilton’s team and helped Derrynoose book their spot in the last four.

Attacked down the wing in each and every game but McNaughton never abandoned his defensive duties.

Photo Credit: Derrynoose

Ollie Hearty (Dorsey)

Manned the heart of the Dorsey defence as Seamus Loughran’s men came within a whisker of reaching the showpiece.

Hearty lead from the centre half back position and earned plenty of turnovers for his side throughout the championship.

Drove his side forward in their close run with Belleek in the semi-final and defended brilliantly throughout.

Stephen Finnegan (Belleek)

The captain of the side enjoyed an unforgettable 2021 campaign that ended with Finnegan raising the Sean Quinn Cup.

The Belleek skipper played a commanding role at the back and worked extremely hard in every contest.

Finnegan was called upon when needed to help out around the field and did so to great effect.

Photo Credit: John Merry

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