Longford come out on top in 10-goal thriller
Longford 5-21 Sligo 5-13
Sligo and Longford shared ten goals and 34 points in an entertaining encounter in bright sunshine at Markievicz Park yesterday, before the midlanders emerged victorious to book their place in the Divisional final against Fermanagh.
The visitors were good value for the win, and never trailed once full-forward Paddy Farrington got their opening score with an expertly finished goal inside the opening minute.
A second goal followed shortly after from corner-forward Cathal Mullane as Longford put 2-1 on the board before Sean Kenny opened the home side's account.
Kenny and Mullane both ended the game with a hat-trick of goals.
Wing-forward Kenny claimed his first three-pointer midway through the opening half, but his side went in 2-12 to 1-7 down at the break, facing an uphill task.
Kenny netted twice more in the second period from a 21-yard free and from a late penalty.
Keith Raymond and Ciaran Brenan also found the net with long-range efforts, as the Longford rearguard struggled to deal with the bright sunshine.
But the free-taking of Joe O'Brien, who finished the game with 1-10, kept Longford out in front through-out, and they emerged with an eight-point win.
Scorers - Longford: J O'Brien 1-10 (0-10fs), C Mullane 3-3, P Farrington 1-3, K Connelly 0-3, P Walsh and P Corcoran 0-1 each; Sligo: S Kenny 3-8 (1-0 pen, 1-5f), K Raymond 1-2 (1-0f), C Brenan 1-0, B O'Loughlin 0-2, L Reidy 0-1
Longford - R Murray 5; J Gaffney 5, K Murray 6, A Sheridan 5; P Corcoran 7, M Coyle 7, G Moore 5; J Casey 7, K Cox 7; B Hanley 6, K Connelly 7, P Walsh 6; J O'Brien 7, P Farrington 7, C Mullane 9. Subs: C McLoughlin for Cox (62), C Corcoran for Walsh (67), E Kiernan for Hanley (68)
Sligo - S Clancy 5; J Kenny 5, A Morrison 5, G Feely 5; T Brennan 5, L Reidy 6, C Behan 5; G O'Kelly-Lynch 5, F Cretaro 6; S Kenny 8, C Brenan 6, K Raymond 7; B O'Loughlin 7, M Davey 5, P Leonard 6. Subs: D Kirby 5 for Morrison (29), L Ryan 5 for Brennan (47), D Collery 5 for Leonard (50), R Redmond 5 for Feely (50)
Ref - M Murtagh