SFC Group 3
DEFENDING champions Knockmore kept their three-in-a row ambitions alive by coming second in their group at the expense of Ballaghaderreen, who have finished third.
Ray Dempsey’s men played the better football but found Ballagh’ tough to break down in a game both teams needed to win to have any certainty of qualifying.
In the end, the East Mayo men were left to rue a penalty miss mid-way through the second half which could have completely turned the tide.
Ballaghadereen’s long-ball strategy yielded mixed results and not a single score from play in the first half.
Knockmore played much slicker football and turned over plenty of Ballagh’ ball, allowing them to build a lead which they never gave up.
Trailing 0-4 to 0-6 at the break, Ballaghadereen were sent reeling when Knockmore struck 1-3 in six minutes – the goal coming from Darren McHale after an excellent team move.
Paul McHugh’s men were later awarded a penalty when target man Kuba Callaghan was hauled down in the square, but goalkeeper Gavin Conway saw his effort blocked by Colm Reape before his rebound ballooned over the bar.
Peter Naughton’s accurate free taking was invaluable for Knockmore as the East Mayo lads maintained the pressure right until the finish.
In the end, Ballagh’ just didn’t have the firepower to get the job done.
C Reape; S Holmes, A Naughton, David McHale; A Timlin (0-1), M Park, C Burke (0-1); K McLoughlin, S McHale; P Ruttledge, Darren McHale (1-2), C Dempsey; J Ruddy, A Orme (0-1), P Naughton (0-6, 5fs).
Subs used: L Durcan for Ruddy (41 mins); K Ruttledge for Burke (51 mins); C Flynn for Dempsey.
G Conway (0-1); A Phillips, S Cunniffe, D Drake; P Callaghan, D McBrien, L Connor; R Lynch (0-1), D Kelly; D Feeney, S Akram, D Forrest; C Hanley, K Callaghan (0-2, 1f), A Moran (0-6, 6fs).
Subs used: O Jordan for P Callaghan (21 mins, blood); P Callaghan for Jordan (27 mins, blood); O Jordan for Connor (46 mins); K Phillips for Feeney (46 mins); S McHugh for Hanley (63 mins); O Phillips for K Callaghan (63 mins).
Referee: K Connelly (Hollymount-Carramore)
SFC Group 3
Ballina Stephenites 4-14
THIS was another show of strength from the Stephenites as they cruised into next weekend’s quarter-finals as group winners with plenty to spare at Hastings Insurance MacHale Park in Castlebar. They will now meet Claremorris next Saturday evening.
Aghamore had no answers to Ballina’s pace and power all over the field, and the game was over as a contest by half-time with nine points between the sides.
First half goals from Dylan Thornton and Padraig O’Hora set the Stephenites up for a lead of 2-6 to 0-3 at the change of ends, and a third goal from Mark Birrane on 41 minutes was a huge blow to Aghamore’s fragile confidence.
The East Mayo side did pull a goal back when Fergal Boland flicked the ball to the net past David Clarke, but this was cancelled out in the 54th minute when Ballina substitute, Luke Doherty, raced through to fire in a fourth goal.
Aghamore sub’ Liam Lavin netted in the 56th minute to give the Aghamore crowd something to cheer but Ballina finished with a flourish as points rained over from Conor McStay, Evan Regan (free) and Jack Irwin to put the gloss on another impressive display.
D Clarke; R Tighe, D Tighe, J Doherty; C Boland, P O’Hora (1-0), K Tighe (0-1); S Callinan, F Irwin; D Thornton (1-0), C McStay (0-1), J Irwin; N Feeney, E Regan (0-6, 6fs), M Birrane (1-1).
Subs used: L Doherty (1-0), M Murray (0-1), C Sweeney, R Morrin, R Geraghty.
A Byrne (0-1, 1f); C Hession, J Kelly, E Delaney; R Lyons, D Kenny, T O’Flaherty (0-2); M McNieve, E Sweeney; C Hunt, F Boland, J Lyons; C Byrne, S Óg Tighe, R Egan (0-3, 3fs).
Subs used: J McNieve, C Harrison, L Lavin (1-0), D Duffy, L Conboy.
Referee: S Corcoran (Islandeady)
SFC GROUP 4
Castlebar Mitchels 0-12
GARRYMORE and Mitchels played out a draw that ensured both go through to the Mayo SFC quarter-finals next weekend.
Garry’ will play Westport while Castlebar will face two-in-a-row champions, Knockmore. Things might have been different if Bryan Lynskey in the Garrymore goal hadn’t pulled off three unbelievable saves or if 17 year-old Seán Morahan, the Mitchels corner-back, hadn’t taken on the responsibility of finding a late equaliser with a fine strike near the death.
This was championship football played at a ferocious pace, with every ball contested, and every blade of grass on the Cong pitch covered.
Garrymore led by two points at the interval and dominated most of the first half after a shaky start. Mitchels fired on in the second period and outscored their opponents but could never build a lead. The draw was a fair result sending both teams home happy.
Man of the match Darren Quinn, Enda Hession and Caolan Crowe were best for Garrymore while Seán Morahan, Ethan Gibbons and Anthony O’Boyle were best for Mitchels.
B Lynskey; C Commins, C Crowe, P Hession; E Hession, C McGrath, S Nally; D Dolan (0-1), G Golden; B Walsh, T Nally (0-3), D Quinn (0-5); M Connolly, M Gibbons (0-2), A Hughes (0-1).
R Byrne; S Morahan (0-1), J Tuohy, D Newcombe; M Fahy, G McDonagh, D McHugh (0-2); P Durcan, A O’Boyle; U O’Reilly, N Douglas (0-1), C Stenson; D Stenson (0-1), P Heneghan (0-2), G Durcan (0-1).
Subs used: E Gibbons (0-3) , R O’Malley (0-1).
SFC GROUP 4
CHARLESTOWN secured their senior status with this hard-earned win in Ballyhaunis, but the Sarsfields failed to win by the required margin to advance to the Mayo SFC quarter-finals.
Garrymore’s draw with Castlebar Mitchels didn’t help their cause either.
Davitts were always competitive and showed great spirit to stay in contention at times when Charlestown looked destined to stretch away.
However, the match ended in controversial circumstances with red cards flashed to Mayo player Paul Towey and a water-boy, while black cards were also sprinkled freely as frustrations which threatened to boil over all day, did so.
The first half was a more sedate matter as Charlestown went to the dressing-room with a three-point lead but with more clinical finishing the gap would have been greater.
Two goal chances flashed inches wide, and a plethora of point chances were spurned while Davitts also butchered a goal chance in the final moments of the half.
The early scoring stakes were a shoot-out between Paul Towey and Niall Treacy with both returning mixed results. Davitts lined out without the injured Colm Boyle but his colleagues worked very hard at the back to plug any gaps.
Towey worked two early goal chances for the Charlestown men but failed to find the net and, right on the stroke of half-time, Darragh McGale tried to find Niall Treacy in glorious isolation in the goalmouth but the ball eluded him.
The big score of the second period arrived after 45 minutes when Joe McBrien picked out Towey and the ace attacker shook the net.
That left the Sarsfields seven points clear, 1-9 to 0-5, but Davitts refused to die.
They steadied the ship with points from Cathal Corless, and despite Charlestown’s best efforts they had to be happy with securing their senior status while Davitts face into a relegation play-off against Ballaghaderreen.
P Walsh; B Conway, C O’Donohue (0-2), J Corley; D Warde, E McLoughlin, G McLoughlin; N Fleming (0-1), G O’Donnell; T Meehan (0-1), P Towey (1-7, 5fs, ‘45), R Cullen; J McBrien, M Lenehan, J Mahon.
Subs used: P Lenehan, J Brennan, S Dunleavy, C Maye, T Holton.
K Prendergast; C Phillips, K Fahey, M Hett; D Trench, T Ronayne, J Trench; C Higgins, F Kelly; C Corless (0-3f), E Ronayne (0-1), S Treacy; N Treacy (0-4, 3fs), R McNamara, D McGale.
Subs used; L Kearns, J Clarke, D Corless, A Macken, B Og McTigue.
Referee: V Neary (Bonniconlon)