Connacht football: Castlebar edge Ballintubber to make it three-in-a-row
St Brigid’s make it seven titles in eight years in Roscommon; Eastern Harps take Sligo decider
Castlebar Mitchels 0-15 Ballintubber 0-13
Castlebar Mitchels have won three-in-a-row after finally wearing down Ballintubber in a tough Mayo county senior football final at Elverys MacHale Park, Castlebar, on Suday.
An audacious point from Mayo player Diarmuid O’Connor levelled the game on 0-13 apiece with a minute of normal time remaining, but in four minutes of injury-time Ger McDonagh fired Mitchels into the lead with a brilliant point, before David Stenson sealed the win with a free.
Five points - all from frees - from the boot of Cillian O’Connor were crucial in giving Ballintubber a 0-9 to 0-7 lead at the interval. The margin between the sides was never greater than two, Barry Moran landing two big scores in that half, but it was two late frees from Cillian O’Connor that pushed his side two clear at the break.
James Durcan was shown a black card before half-time for a body-check on Cillian O’Connor, but despite this his side did have the assistance of a strong breeze in the second half.
Ballintubber went three clear at one stage in the second half (0-10 to 0-7) - but Castlebar then came with four points without reply, McDonagh putting them into the lead for the first time in the matc.
The lead was to change hands again after Alan Dillon, who took over the freetaking duties following the dismissal of Cillian O’Connor on a second yellow card, nailed a free, but it was the champions who toughed it out to equal the record set by Garrymore in the 70s.
Castlebar Mitchels: R Byrne, J Maughan, G McDonagh (0-2), D Newcombe, R O’Malley, P Durcan, S Irwin, D Kirby (0-1) E O’Reilly (0-1), J Durcan (0-2), B Moran (0-3), C Costello, D Stenson (0-5, 4f), N Douglas (0-1), A Walsh.Subs: C Kyne for J Durcan (BC, 28 mins) N McCarney for Irwin (44 mins).
Ballintubber: B Walsh, G Loftus, B Murphy, M Kelly, D Clarke, M Plunkett (0-1), D Coleman (0-1), J Gibbons (0-1), D Geraghty, P O’Connor, A Plunkett (0-2), A Dillon (0-1, 1f), D O’Connor (0-1), C O’Connor (0-6, 5f), S O’Malley. Subs: S Broderick for O Malley (40 mins), J Geraghty for Loftus (47 mins).
Referee: D Corcoran (Islandeady).
Roscommon club SFC final
St Brigid’s 3-13 Roscommon Gaels 3-7
Two late goals from St. Brigid’s clinched their seventh Roscommon football title in eight years after an exciting final against Roscommon Gaels before acrowd of 1,635 at Hyde Park.
The final began sensationally when Brian Stack scored a Brigid’s goal after just 12 seconds - but the Gaels were level by the ninth minute when Cian Connolly converted a penalty.
While Senan Kilbride, Cathal McHugh and Stack found the range for Brigid’s, a 25th-minute goal by James O’Gara left just two points between the teams at half-time.
Roscommon Gaels then bounced back from the sending-off of David O’Gara in the 41st minute to take the lead with a Richard Hughes point in the 48th minute.
However, the Gaels would score just one more point as Brigid’s produced a barnstorming finish. McHugh equalised quickly and his replacement, 19-year-old Jack McDonnell, edged Frankie Dolan’s team ahead after 55 minutes.
With two minutes left McDonnell set up Conor Murray who slid a low shot into the net. Eddie Lohan slotted their third goal after being set up by the impressive Padraig Kelly, as Brigid’s made full use of the extra man.
The final scoreline was harsh on Roscommon Gaels, who were appearing in their first final since 2004, but Brigid’s were deserving victors.
St Brigid’s: S Mannion; D Sheehy (0-1), P Domican, N McInerney; R Stack, I Kilbride, J Murray; G Dolan, E Nolan (1-0); E Sheehy, D Dolan (0-1), P Kelly (0-1); C McHugh (0-4, 3f), S Kilbride (0-4, 3f), B Stack (1-1). Subs: D Donnelly for J Murray (h-t), D Cunniffe for D Sheehy (48), J McDonnell (0-1) for McHugh (50), C Murray (1-0) for D Dolan (55), N Grehan for E Sheehy (58).
Roscommon Gaels: J Fetherstone; L McNeela, J McManus, R Gleeson (0-1); P Gleeson, D O’Gara, C Dineen; M Healy (1-0), J McDermott; J O’Gara (1-0), S Oates, R Hughes (0-2); C Connolly (1-4, 1-0 pen, 4f), M Nally, K Kilcline. Subs: K O’Gara for Nally (37), R Horan for Gleeson (54), B O’Gara for J O’Gara (48), C Egan for Oates (59).
Referee: B Healy.
Sligo club SFC final
Eastern Harps 1-13 Tourlestrane 1-9
Tourlestrane came from four points down to become the first team to winback-to-back Sligo senior championship titles since 1989 in Markievicz Park on Sunday.
The team managed by Eamonn O’Hara and Gerry McGowan justified their favouritism in the second half, claiming a four-point victory against an impressive Eastern Harps side.
Harps free-taker Shane O’Grady landed six first half points as Shane King’s side deservedly led 1-6 to 0-5 at the break.
Cathal Henry’s goal - finished confidently after a great pass from Liam Gaughan - proved the defining score, despite captain Martin Doherty netting for Harps in the first half.
Tourlestrane: A Bowens; N Gaughan, B Kennedy, B Walsh; S Dunne, A McIntyre, J Leonard; S Henry, J Kelly (0-2); C Henry (1-2, 1f), B Egan (0-3, 2f), G Gaughan (0-1); L Gaughan (0-3, 1f), P Harte (0-1), A Dunne (0-1). Subs: C Neary for Kennedy (29), J Quinn for Henry (29), JF Carr for G Gaughan (52), J Marren for Henry (60).
Eastern Harps: S Heraghty; G Horan, K Cryan, D Madden; M Clarke (0-1), R Donovan (0-1), C Higgins; T Taylor, K Gallagher; C McGill, T Cryan (0-1), D Hannon; E Lavin, S O’Grady (0-6, 6f), M Doherty (1-0). Subs: J O’Hara for Hannon (48), M Lennon for McGill (48), B Cryan for K Cryan (54).
Referee: B Judge.
London club SFC final
Fulham Irish 0-15 Tir Chonaill Gaels 1-11
Former Tyrone star Owen Mulligan kicked the winner as Fulham Irish beat Tir Chonaill Gaels in an enthralling London SFC final by a single point.
London stalwart Mark Gottsche had a final opportunity to tie the game but he pull a long and difficult free wide in the final act after nearly 70-minutes of end-to-end action.
Fulham and Tir Chonaill held nothing back during a contest marked by some absolutely stunning scores from Gael’s forward Killian Butler and Joe Roberts first-half goal looked like proving the difference between the sides until Tir Chonaill’s Kevin Rafferty got sent off for a second high tackle on Mulligan with 10 minutes remaining.
Fulham were trailing by a goal at that point, but they fought their way back into the contest with fine scores from Liam Staunton and substitute Daniel Eastwood, and their relentless pressing set up a grandstand finish that saw Mulligan convert a late free to win the contest.
Fulham Irish: J Tavey; R Morgan, C Hyde, C Murphy; J Gilfedder, H Dockry, A Savage; M Murphy (0-1), D O’Connor; L Turley, O Mulligan (0-3f), L Staunton (0-5, 0-3f); R Turley, M Hughes (0-1), P Friel (0-2f). Subs: D Eastwood (0-2) for Friel (34 mins), B Martin (0-1) for Gilfedder (40 mins), A McArdle for L Turley (48 mins), S Quinn for Staunton (59 mins), S O’Sullivan R Turley.
Tir Chonaill Gaels: G McEvoy; M McWilliams, S Burke, P Butler; M McCoy (0-1), R Breen, G McGee; A McDermott, M Gottsche (0-1, ‘45); K Rafferty, L Gavaghan (0-2), A Askin; J McGrath (0-2f), J Roberts (1-0), K Butler (0-4). Subs: A McGarvey for Askin (26 mins), N Garland for McGrath (40 mins), A Hanlon (0-1) for Roberts (40 mins).
Referee: M Maher