MONAGHAN 0-14 ROSCOMMON 1-19
Roscommon and Monaghan have both reached the knockout stages of Division 3A of the Allianz Hurling League, but it’s the Connacht County that will take the most momentum into those playoffs after they comfortably outplayed their hosts at Clontibret.
An impressive ten-minute burst immediately after half-time was the vital period of the game, as Roscommon racked up five points unanswered while hurling into a strong breeze, leaving a misfiring Monaghan attack with far too much to do.
Both sides struggled for accuracy early on, with Roscommon scoring 0-3 from their first nine attempts on goal, with Monaghan registering just 0-1 from six opportunities.
Some good scores from Naos Connaughton, Eoin Fitzgerald, Eamon Flanagan and Mickey Joe Egan saw the scoreboard finally get moving, while Conor Mulry pounced on a spilled puckout from Monaghan corner back Cathal McAnespie to set up Brendan Mulry for a close range goal, but after establishing a commanding seven-point lead, Roscommon allowed Monaghan back into the tie before half-time.
Niall Arthur and Thomas Hughes found the target with some very impressive points, and a score of 1-10 to 0-8 at half-time felt quite even, given the strength of the wind that was set to favour the home side after half-time.
Roscommon produced their best hurling after the interval, with 19-year-old man of the match Paddy Fallon leading the way. The Oran youngster struck four of the first five points of the second half and ensured an easy finish for the winners, who march straight into the league final, awaiting the winners of Armagh and Monaghan next weekend.
Scorers for Monaghan: F Rafter 0-8 (0-6f), N Arthur 0-2, N Garland 0-1, T Hughes 0-1, P Malone 0-1, C McNally 0-1.
Scorers for Roscommon: P Fallon 0-9 (0-4f), B Mulry 1-1, E Fitzgerald 0-3, MJ Egan 0-2, E Flanagan 0-2f, C Mulry 0-1, N Connaughton 0-1.
Monaghan: H Byrne 8; J Guinan 8, C McNally 7, C McAnespie 5; A Kenny 6, K Crawley 7, C Flynn 6; N Garland 7, C Merrick 5; F Rafter 8, D Hughes 5, P Malone 6; T Hughes 7, N Arthur 7, C McHugh 5.
Subs used: C Guinan 6 for D Hughes (50), E Walsh for Kenny (62), C Power for T Hughes (66).
Roscommon: E Lawless 8; D Mullen 6, M Ward 8, T Fleming 7; J Brennan 6, C Cosgrove 8, E Flanagan 8; D Finn 8, E Fitzgerald 8; MJ Egan 6, A Donnelly 6, B Mulry 6; P Fallon 9, N Connaughton 8 C Mulry 7.
Subs used: E Mulry 8 for Brennan (40), J Dowling for Fitzgerald (63), P Brennan for Flanagan (70).
Referee: T Conway (Derry)