Keelin McGann seals Longford’s first league victory in last game

Allianz NFL Division 3 Longford 3-17 Antrim 3-12

Longford's Keelin McGann. Photo by: Ben McShane/Sportsfile

With nothing at stake for either county, already relegated Longford produced a fine performance to record their first win of the league campaign in the final game in Division 3.

Longford made a great start to the game and were ahead by eight points after 13 minutes of play. Keelin McGann with his, and his side’s first goal in the 13th minute. Antrim’s first real attack yielded a goal with Colm McLarnon racing through before firing to the net.

Two minutes later Ruairí McCann got Antrim’s second goal to cut the gap to two points. Both sides exchanged points before Longford hit a purple patch again before the break with full-forward Daire O’Brien hitting over three marks and a fine point from play. The Midlanders held a six-point half-time lead – 1-13 to 2-04.

Longford extended their lead further in the 40th minute when Darragh Doherty picked up possession about 40 metres out from goal and soloed through before hitting a terrific strike past Ronan Hanna.

There were seven between the sides when Dylan Farrell fired over a free in the 50th minute. Antrim were back in the game in the 52nd minute when Patrick McCormick found the back of the net with a fine finish.

Patrick McBride followed up with a point to cut the deficit to three in the 53rd minute. Once again Longford response was excellent with Doherty and Darren Gallagher (free) firing over points before McGann hit a fine effort for Longford’s third goal in the 63rd minute.

Antrim weren’t giving up yet with Odhrán Eastwood, McCann and Peter Healy kicking over points to leave four between the sides entering stoppage time.

Dylan Farrell hit over a superb free in stoppage time. Deep in stoppage time the Saffrons were awarded a free; with Longford crowding the goals, McCann’s effort was blocked and tipped over the bar for a point and the last score of the game.

Scorers – Longford: K McGann 2-2; D Doherty 1-2; D O’Brien (3m), D Farrell (4f, ‘45) 0-4 each; O Kenny 0-2f, P Fox, F Sheridan, D Gallagher (f) 0-1 each. Antrim: R McCann 1-4 (0-4f); P McCormick, C McLarnon 1-1 each; O Eastwood, R Murray (2f) 0-2 each; P McBride, P Healy 0-1 each.

Longford – M Hughes 6; P Fox 6, A Farrell 7, Byran Masterson 5; P Lynn 6, M Quinn 5, P Foy 7; T McNevin 5, F Sheridan 5; K McGann 8, D Doherty 7, O Kenny 5, A Farrell 7; D O’Brien 8, D Farrell 7. Subs: J Kiernan for Sheridan (49), R Harkin for Quinn (53), D Gallagher for Kenny (61), C Keenan for Doherty (63), Daniel Reynolds for O’Brien (65)

Antrim – R Hanna 6; E McCabe 5, D Lynch 5, J McAuley 5; P McCormick 6, B McCormick 7, M Jordan 6; C McLarnon 7, J Dowling 6; C Hynds 6, R McCann 7, P McBride 7; D McEnhill 5, S McGarry 5, O Eastwood 6. Subs: P Finnegan 6 for Hynds, R Murray 6 for McGarry and P Healy 6 for McCabe (h-t), L Mulholland for Hanna (47), J Finnegan for Lynch (51)

Ref – N McKenna (Monaghan)