Sunday 18 March 2018

Minors finish League in style with Mayo defeat

Sligo picked up their first win in the Connacht Minor League with an impressive victory over Mayo in the concluding round of the competition at Charlestown on Saturday.

Despite conceding a goal and a point in the opening minutes, Sligo dug deep to secure a victory that will give them great confidence ahead of the Connacht Championship.

Cian Hanley gave Mayo the perfect start with a goal and a point but Sligo gradually settled into the game and two points by Cian Lally kep them in touch.

Then the Yeats County struck for a vital goal as Cian Gilmartin latched on to Darragh Cummins' free and drilled the ball low to the net to bring the sides level.

Cathal Boland restored Mayo's lead but Sligo hit back in confident style and a point by Nathan Rooney from a free tied things up again.

Niall O'Dowd edged the Yeats County in front and then they stunned Mayo with a second goal.

This time Gilmartin was at the heart of the move as he delivered a long ball to Lally who finished with a blistering shot to the back of the net.

Sligo were in full flow at this stage and increased their lead when Jason Perry picked off a superb long range score.

Hanley replied with a free for Mayo and Sligo 'keeper, Daniel Cafferkey was obliged to produce a smart save as the home side stepped up the pressure.

However, Gilmartin got through for a Sligo point just before half time to give them a 2-6 to 1-4 advantage at half time.

Mayo cut the gap to two points in the early stages of the second half but Sligo refused to panic and a point from a free by Rooney kept them out in front.

Mayo drew level at 1-10 to 2-7 after 53 minutes and looked to be on course for victory.

Sligo were not to be denied, however.

Two excellent points from frees by Rooney restored their authority and Perry was unlucky with a great effort which flew into the side-nettting near the end.

SLIGO: D Cafferkey, C Watters, E McGuinness, A Clerkin, R Feehily, C Gilmartin (1-1), G O'Kelly Lynch, D Cummins, P McNamara, C Stenson, G Brady, N O'Dowd (0-1), J Perry (0-1), N Rooney (0-4), C Lally (1-2)

MAYO: M Flanagan, C Scott, D Clarke, J Forkan, G McHale (0-1), F McCormack, S Conlon, B Duffy, M Ruane, A Burke, C Hanley (1-5), C Boland (0-1), C Hennelly, C Byrne (0-1), B Reape (0-1). Subs: E O'Donoghue (0-1), M Burkie (0-1)

Referee: S Hehir, Galway

Sligo Champion