Sligo Rovers under-19s season ended with a 2-0 loss to Shelbourne at Tolka Park.
Rovers finished the season strongly, going into the game five unbeaten, but lost out to a Shelbourne side needing a win to ensure a top four finish and place in the play-offs.
There was a quiet opening to the afternoon in Drumcondra and it took until the 18th minute for the first serious shot to come in. Shels’ Aaron Robinson had a shot but getting in the way was Oisin Connolly, just back from help the Ireland under-17s qualify for the European championships in the summer.
The Bit o’Red gave a debut to Adam Byrne in goals and he had to make a first save two minutes later to keep out a shot from Grimes.
On 28 minutes the home side found a breakthrough from a set-piece. Grimes delivered from the right to the near post where centre-back Kearney headed in with power.
Byrne had to be alert again on 37 minutes and he made two saves in quick succession to keep out Pakenham and then Gorman.
The first real opening for Rovers was in first half stoppage time when Callum Frempong latched onto a ball in behind but his shot was turned away for a corner.
The second half was only two minutes old when Gorman went on a good run down the right. He played the ball across to Robinson waiting on the edge of the box and he hit the ball well into the corner of the net.
The game quietened for a period after as Shels were content with their two goals lead. Byrne had to make decent saves from Grimes again and then Obhakhan but wasn’t seriously troubled.
A ball over the top on 76 minutes seen Rovers go closest. A deft first touch by Liam Flatley set up a chance to shoot but he sent it just wide.
He had another chance in stoppage time when sub Darren Kilcalwey cut the ball back to him from the left side but he was unable to keep the ball down enough to get it on target.
The season ends with Rovers in a credible sixth place finish in the 10-team Northern Elite Division.
Team: Byrne, Harrigan, Connolly, Taheny (c), Borotto, Doyle (Kilcawley 57), Hannon (Carney 82), Frempong (Kennoy 76), Walsh (Anderson 70), Flatley, Hunt (McCallion 61).