Saturday 20 January 2018

In Brief: Rooney new Laois football captain

LAOIS: Dual star Darren Rooney was named the new county football captain last night, prompting speculation that he may concentrate on just one sport this season after several years of inspiring both county senior teams.

Manager Liam Kearns also named three debutants for Sunday's NFL Division 1 opener against Galway, which is being televised live on TG4.

Goalkeeper Conor Gorman and corner-back Rory Stapleton replace recently retired Fergal Byron and Joe Higgins and Arles-Kilcruise's Kevin Meaney starts in midfield alongside Padraig Clancy.

Monaghan: manager Seamus McEnaney is without captain Damien Freeman (just back from his honeymoon) for their Division 2 opener against Roscommon.

He is also without regular 'keeper Shane Duffy (just back from Australia) and the injured Eoin Lennon, but still has a very strong side, which includes Paul McGuigan and Raymond Ronaghan.

SLIGO: The defending Connacht champions feature one new name and one notable returnee for their tough Division 3 opener in Newry tomorrow.

Kevin Byrne (Geevagh) makes his NFL debut in midfield, while Eamonn Cawley, a former county player in Peter Ford's, is named at corner-forward.

New manager Tommy Jordan will have to do without Sean Davey for the moment as he is taking a break from football at present but otherwise he is close to full strength.


Rutledge leads gutsy fightback

St Muredach's 0-10

St Mary's 0-6

St Muredach's advanced into the Connacht Colleges SFC semi-finals by edging out St Mary's in a dour struggle in Charlestown yesterday.

They will now face St Jarlath's this Sunday for a place in the final, while Rice College take on St Colman's in the other semi-final, also on Sunday.

St Mary's, who had the aid of the strong wind during the opening half, led at the break 0-6 to 0-4. However, St Muredach's began the second-half with a renewed energy a point from Brian Rutledge on 37 minutes leveled proceedings.

The Ballina side kicked on from there and further points from Daniel O'Hara, Jamie Forde, Patrick Crowe and Rutledge (free), ensured a splendid victory.

Scorers -- St Muredach's: B Rutledge 0-3 (0-1f), P Crowe, C Walsh (0-1f), D O'Hara 0-2 each, J Forde 0-1. St Mary's: R O'Connell 0-4 (0-1f), M O'Conaire 0-2f.

St Muredach's -- M Wyse; B Foody, B Mattimoe, C Cawley; M McCormack, C Malarkey, J Walsh; P Crowe, B Reilly; E Smith, C Walsh, J Forde; B Rutledge, N Doherty, Dl O'Hara; Sub: F O'Neill for Smith.

St Mary's -- N Walsh; C Furey, D O'Connell, D Kelly; B Morgan, N Hyland, G Cheevers; M Elwood, J Duane; M O'Conaire, B Warde, B Sheridan; D Wynne, R O'Connell, S Coughlan; Subs: C Grant for Sheridan, E Holland for Warde.

REF -- M Kenny (Westport).

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