Castleconnor 0-12 St Michael’s 1-7
Fureys Coaches Senior
Football League Div 3 final
AT one stage cruising by nine points, Castleconnor looked to be comfortable on their way to victory over St Michael’s in the Div 3 final in Scarden on Sunday.
However, their opponents came right back into the game despite being reduced to 13 men and clawed their way back to within two points by the finish.
Leading by 0-11 to 0-2 on 36 minutes, it seemed the west Sligo men were going to have it easy but a goal from St Michael’s full forward James Mackay gave Alan and Robbie Taaffe’s men the boost they needed and their opponents managed one more point with St Michael’s scoring five however Nigel Reape and Sean McLoughlin’s men did enough to take home the honours.
It was the west Sligo men who got off to the best start, points from full forward Michael Cahill and two from captain Seán Carrabine one from a free along with a long range effort from Stephen Rogan saw them ahead by 0-4 to 0-1 midway through the opening half, Padraig McGoldrick getting his side on the scoreboard through a free.
Both sides had early goal chances saved, St Michael’s keeper Fintan Ruddy alert on an effort from Carrabine, the excellent Oisín Flynn then pointing followed by another from Thomas Langanas Castleconnor’s lead stretched to five points.
Down the other end, St Michael’s Kyle Carty was fouled and Mackey’s free in looked like it possibly crossed the line on 24 minutes.
Castleconnor then finished the half as strongly as they started, with three points on the bounce, two frees from Flynn along with a good effort from Patrick Cooney as they led by 8 at the interval, 0-10 to 0-2 with St Michael’s second point also coming from a free from Mackey.
St Michael’s needed a decent start following the resumption and another Flynn free, putting Castleconnor nine in front, then saw St Michael’s reduced to 14 men.
Ciaran McKeon was shown a black card by referee Ciaran O’Donnell and as he had been on a yellow, he was shown a red card on 37 minutes.
Despite this, St Michael’s powered up the field and Simon McKeon found Mackey who blasted into the net bringing it back to a 6 point game.
Flynn added another free on 40 minutes and it was quickly responded to by St Michael’s with Conor Feeney scoring as there was more intensity from St Michael’s, Paul Flanagan and McGoldrick working hard.
They were reduced to 13 men however on 50 minutes as the task was getting harder, Cian McGowan sent off for a trip on Carrabine as Castleconnor led by 0-12 to 1-3.
They didn’t score in the remaining 20 minutes, however they had done enough.
St Michael’s despite being down to 13 kept pushing a good point from Mackey on 53 minutes followed a minute later by a superb score from Carty after a neat one-two with Collie McTiernan.
Four points separated them with five minutes to go as Castleconnor were then down to 14 when Langan received a second yellow.
Ruddy hit a long-range effort which Castleconnor managed to defend with McGoldrick (free) and Simon McKeon chipping away at the Castleconnor lead but the victory belonged to the west Sligo men in front of a decent crowd in sunny Scarden.
CASTLECONNOR: Liam Donegan, Ronan Wilson, Keith Earlis, Ronan Keane, Patrick Cooney, Eoin Kent, Cian Flynn, Ciaran Kilcullen, Oisín Flynn, Odhran Quinn, Seán Carrabine (C), Thomas Langan, Darragh Flynn, Michael Cahill, Stephen Rogan.
St Michael’s: Fintan Ruddy, Gavin Walsh, Oran McKenna, Paddy Kelly, Conor Feeney, Collie McTiernan, Hughie McGowan, Steve Clerkin, Kyle Carty, Paul Flanagan, Ryan Walsh, Ciaran McKeon, Simon McKeon, James Mackey, Padraig McGoldrick (C).
Substititues used: Cian McGowan, Gavin McGowan, Kyle Davey, Aaron Davey.
Referee: Ciaran O’Donnell.