Hooray for Henry as Tourlestrane retain title
Tourlestrane came from four points down to become the first team to win back-to-back Sligo senior championship titles since 1989 in Markievicz Park yesterday.
The team managed by Eamonn O'Hara and Gerry McGowan justified their favourites tag to claim a four-point victory against an impressive Eastern Harps.
Cathal Henry's goal, finished confidently after a great pass from Liam Gaughan, proved the defining score, despite captain Martin Doherty netting for Harps in the first-half.
Harps free-taker Shane O'Grady landed six first-half points as Shane King's side deservedly led 1-6 to 0-5 at the break.
However, Tourlestrane scored six points without reply in the third quarter, as brothers Liam and Gary Gaughan, and Man of the Match Johnny Kelly all landed scores.
Thomas Cryan, Michael Clarke and Ross Donovan all hit fine points at the other end as Harps tried to respond, but Tourlestrane weren't to be denied.
Alan Dunne opened the scoring with a slick point from play, but the effective O'Grady showed his prowess by landing two difficult frees, and the sides were level four times in the opening half.
Tourlestrane lost Brian Kennedy and Stephen Henry to injury, but responded brilliantly after the restart to edge two points ahead.
Fine scores from Egan, Pat Harte and Gary Gaughan pushed the south Sligo side clear, before Liam Gaughan flicked a pass into Henry, who finished into the side of the net.
Harps brought the gap back to three points, but Kelly wrapped things up with a fisted point in injury-time.
Scorers - Tourlestrane: C Henry 1-2 (1f), L Gaughan (1f), B Egan (2f) 0-3 each, J Kelly 0-2, A Dunne, P Harte, G Gaughan 0-1 each. Eastern Harps: S O'Grady 0-6 (6f), M Doherty 1-0, T Cryan, M Clarke, R Donovan 0-1 each.
Tourlestrane - A Bowens; N Gaughan, B Kennedy, B Walsh; S Dunne, A McIntyre, J Leonard; S Henry, J Kelly; C Henry, B Egan, G Gaughan; L Gaughan, P Harte, A Dunne. Reps: C Neary for Kennedy (29), J Quinn for Henry (29), JF Carr for G Gaughan (52), J Marren for Henry (60).
Eastern Harps - S Heraghty; G Horan, K Cryan, D Madden; M Clarke, R Donovan, C Higgins; T Taylor, K Gallagher; C McGill, T Cryan, D Hannon; E Lavin, S O'Grady, M Doherty. Reps: J O'Hara for Hannon (48), M Lennon for McGill (48), B Cryan for K Cryan (54).
Ref - B Judge.
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