Division Three wrap: Pat Havern leads the way with six points as Down overpower Antrim

Offaly miss a late penalty as they fall to Clare; Westmeath work past Wicklow to maintain 100 per cent start to the league

National Football League Division Three: Antrim 1-6 Down 1-15

Down maintained their 100 per cent record in Division Three as they handed Antrim their first defeat at a packed Corrigan Park on Sunday.

Pat Havern led the way with six points and Ceilum Doherty’s late 1-1 put a gloss on the board as they laid down a marker for when the sides meet again in the Ulster Championship.

Down were in command for most of the opening half and hit the first three points before Antrim managed to get on terms when Marc Jordan popped into Paddy McAleer to coach home.

Caolan Mooney was thwarted by Michael Byrne seconds later, but John O’Hare converted the subsequent 45.


The wides were stacking up for Down but they were back to three in front before an Antrim rally late in the half saw Joseph Finnegan and Dominic McEnhill on the board, but Havern would kick his fourth of the opening half to give the visitors a 0-7 to 1-2 lead.

Havern extended the gap after the break, but Antrim began to enjoy a productive spell as they drew level.

Down had upped the stakes with the next three scores through Odhran Murdock, Havern and Oisin Savage.

Byrne pulled one back, but it would be Antrim’s last score as Down pulled away in the final 10 minutes as Savage, James Guinness and Danny Magill pointed before Doherty’s late salvo, the goal coming as he stabbed home the rebound after his initial shot was blocked.

ANTRIM: M Byrne (0-2, two frees); R Boyle, E Walsh, K Keenan; M Jordan, J Finnegan (0-1), D McAleese; C McLarnon, P McAleer (1-0); E Hynds, N Burns, R McCann; P McBride, C McGettigan, D McEnhill (0-3, two frees).

Subs: B Kelly for C McGettigan (half-time), R McQuillan for N Burns (54 mins), D Lynch for D McAleese (59), P Shivers for C McLarnon (63), O Doherty for E Hynds (68)

DOWN: J O’Hare (0-1, 45); R McEvoy, P Fegan, C Doherty (1-1); N McParland, M Rooney, P Laverty; O Murdock (0-1), P Havern (0-6, four frees); D Guinness, C Francis, C Mooney; S Annett, J Guinness (0-2), L Kerr (0-1).

Subs: J Ryan for N McParland (5 mins), O Savage (0-2) for J Flynn (33), D Magill (0-1) for S Annett (42), R Magill for C Francis (50), A Doherty for J Guinness (63)

Referee: E McFeely (Donegal)

Westmeath 1-13 Wicklow 0-10

Propelled by a great goal from veteran Kieran Martin in the 15th minute, Westmeath maintained their 100 per cent start to their Division Three campaign with a six-point win over Wicklow in a largely scrappy game in Aughrim on Sunday afternoon.

The respective number 14s, Kevin Quinn (three points, including two frees) and Senan Baker (two frees), monopolised the scoring before Martin found the net in style on the quarter-hour mark to put the visitors 1-2 to 0-3 ahead. Dessie Dolan’s charges always looked the more likely winners thereafter and they deservedly led by 1-5 to 0-4 at the interval.

One of Wicklow’s half-time subs, Jack Kirwan, spurned a glorious goal opportunity within 30 seconds of the resumption of play, the ball coming back off the butt of the post, and corner back Malachy Stone was superbly thwarted by Westmeath goalkeeper Jason Daly some eight minutes later when a goal beckoned.

Buoyed by these let-offs, the Lake County men kept the scoreboard ticking over, with corner forward Danny McCartan kicking three points in his league debut. Baker continued to convert most of his frees, and despite Quinn’s best efforts at the other end, Wicklow - whose manager Oisín McConville was suspended - never threatened to garner their first league points of 2024.

WESTMEATH: J Daly; J Dolan, C Drumm, J Gonoud; S McCartan, R Wallace (0-1), C Dillon; R Connellan, A McCormack; D Lynch, R O’Toole (0-1), J Lynam; D McCartan (0-3), S Baker (0-6, five frees), K Martin (1-1, one free). 

Subs: K Maguire for  Dolan (51 mins), R Forde (0-1) for Martin (55), N Harte for Lynam (55), M Whittaker for Dillon (60), D Scahill for Gonoud (67).

WICKLOW: S Doyle; T Moran, M Nolan, M Stone; J Prendergast, P O’Keane, E Murtagh (0-1); D Healy, C Maguire; L O’Neill, E Darcy, C Baker; O McGraynor, K Quinn (0-8, seven frees), C McDonald. 

Subs: J Kirwan for Prendergast (half-time), JP Nolan (0-1) for Baker (half-time), F O’Shea for McDonald (55 mins), B Nesbitt for O’Neill (55), C Fee for McGraynor (60).

Referee: C Dourneen (Cavan)

Clare 2-10 Offaly 1-12

A very relieved Clare side collected two invaluable National Football League points in Tullamore on Sunday as Offaly missed a penalty to win it with the last kick of the game.

There was dismay among the home support when Peter Cunningham blasted a 75th minute penalty high over the bar, awarded for a foul on sub Jordan Quinn.

Clare had showed terrific battling qualities to come back from the dead and lead by two points in injury time but Offaly will spend a long few hours in the coming week wondering how they lost this. They were 1-10 to 0-4 up twenty minutes into the second half and that was a very fair reflection of their superiority up to that point, only for a collapse to follow.

Offaly were full value for their 0-7 to 0-3 interval lead and they continued to dominate into the second half. They got the first three points and when Anton Sullivan punched a goal to make it 1-10 to 0-4 after 50 minutes it looked all over.

A 58th minute penalty goal from Ciaran Downes gave Clare hope but Offaly still led by three in the 69th minute. Excellent sub Diarmuid O’Donnell levelled it up and a flying Clare took the initiative with injury time points from Cormac Murray and Daniel Walsh.

Offaly had that last chance to snatch it but couldn’t take it to leave them in the relegation dogfight.

CLARE: S Ryan; M Doherty, R Lanigan, M Garry; I Ugweru, A Sweeney, D Walsh (0-1); Gavin Murray, B McNamara; D Coughlan, E McMahon (0-3, three frees), C Downes (1-0); M McInerney (0-1), A Griffin (0-1), S Griffin (0-1).

Subs: C Murray (0-1) for S Griffin (33 mins), E O’Connor for Garry (half-time), D O’Donnell (1-2) for McInerney (44), T McDonald for G Murray (54), J Curran for Coughlan (56)

OFFALY: I Duffy; L Pearson, D Dempsey, A Bracken; C Egan (0-1), J Furlong, J O’Brien; E Carroll, P Cunningham (0-1, penalty); K McDermott, R McNamee (0-2), J Hayes (0-1); D Hyland (0-3, two frees), C Farrell, Nigel Dunne (0-4, two frees and one 45).

Subs: A Sullivan (1-0) for Farrell (29 mins), C Flynn for McDermott (52), K O’Neill for Hyland (56), R Egan for O’Bren (60), J Quinn for Carroll (67).

Referee: James Molloy (Galway)

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