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Raymond strikes late to seal five-in-a-row for Calry-St Joseph's





Calry-St Joseph's dominance of the Sligo senior hurling championship continues but Saturday's fifth successive title at Markievicz Park was their least convincing success.

Man of the match Keith Raymond struck the winner in added time, his seventh point, to secure a ninth title in 11 years for the Sligo town side.

But Western Gaels almost forced a replay in the dying seconds only for Daniel Kirby, who had earlier landed 0-5, to miss a last-gasp opportunity. Gaels, who were appearing in their fifth county final, with just one triumph (2010), made this a competitive decider - they lost last year's final by 23 points - even without the suspended Aidan Morrison.

Gaels led 0-4 to 0-1 by the 14th minute with three of their early scores coming from centre-forward Kirby, son of manager Donie Kirby.

The beaten finalists also had the day's best point - Alan Stenson's effort - and they were denied a goal when Tom Mahon's close-range effort was kept out by Calry-St Joseph's netminder Chris Madden.

Calry-St Joseph's, who struggled throughout to reflect their favourites' tag, kept in touch via scores from Raymond but they were lucky to be just two points adrift at the break, 0-7 to 0-5, as Gaels hit seven wides.

The second period was a similar battle - Calry-St Joseph's went ahead, 0-8 to 0-7, after three unanswered points. A tense conclusion could have been avoided if Calry-St Joseph's had taken their one significant goal chance but Kevin Gilmartin was denied by 'keeper Morgan Fitzsimons.

SCORERS - Calry-St Joseph's: K Raymond 0-7 (5fs, 1 '65); D Cox, D Collery, D Reidy 0-1 each. Western Gaels: D Kirby 0-5 (4fs); A Stenson 0-3 (1f); T Mahon 0-1.

CALRY-ST JOSEPH'S - C Madden; N Tracy, J Kenny, C Maguire; F Coyne, L Reidy, N McDermott; K Raymond, R Cox; D Keown, D Collery, T Kelly; D Cox, K Gilmartin, D Reidy. Subs: David Cox for Reidy (28, blood sub); B Shannon for Maguire (h-t); D Rattigan for Madden (57).

WESTERN GAELS - M Fitzsimons; S Greene, F Ryan, T Cawley; C Hallinan, J Connor, M Connolly; G Ryan, MJ Crean; L Ryan, D Kirby, M McGowan; N Hannon, T Mahon, A Stenson. Subs: R Campion for Hannon (49).

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Ref - J Doyle (Naomh Eoin)

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