Cunningham lifts Antrim
Published 08/02/2010 | 05:00
Two late points from Paddy Cunningham sneaked a victory for Antrim at Casement Park yesterday.
It was close all the way and level four times, but the action never rose above the mediocre, with both sides tossing away scoring chances.
Sligo opened with a flurry of three points in six minutes, but Antrim responded to level by the 12th minute.
It was all-square again in the 18th and 25th minutes before the Saffrons hit their best spell of the game, scoring 1-3 without reply.
The goal was rocketed home from the penalty spot by Cunningham on the half-hour after Tony Scullion had been smothered at the post by agile 'keeper Philip Greene.
Sligo, though, hit back with points by Johnny Davey and Adrian Marren, to leave Antrim leading by 1-8 to 0-7 at the break.
On the restart, the visitors rifled over three unanswered points in four minutes to narrow the gap again to 1-8 to 0-10.
Only two points, both by Antrim, were scored over the next 18 minutes, but Sligo then hit three more without reply to level at 1-10 to 0-13. However, Cunningham then sent the winners 1-12 to 0-13 ahead.
The excellent Marren had the last say with a point, but it was not enough for the visitors.
SCORERS -- Antrim: P Cunningham 1-5 (1-0 pen, 2f); M McCann 0-3 (1f); D O'Hagan, C Close, M Magill, G O'Boyle 0-1 each. Sligo: A Marren 0-7 (4f); M Breheny 0-3 (3f); M Quinn, J Davey, A Costello, S Coen 0-1 each.
ANTRIM -- S McGreevy; D McCann, P Doherty, K O'Boyle; T Scullion, J Crozier, D O'Hagan; M McCann, B Herron; C Close, T McCann, J Loughery; P Cunningham, M Magill, N O'Connell. Subs: A Douglas for Doherty (40 mins), C Murray for O'Connell (41), G O'Boyle for Magill (51), K Brady for Close (63 ).
SLIGO -- P Greene; C Harrison, N McGuire, R Donavan; N Ewing, M Quinn, J Davey; E Mullen, T Taylor; A Costello, M Breheny, A Marren; S Coen, K Sweeney, D Kelly. Subs: S Davey for Mullen (63).
REF -- J McKee (Armagh).