Hunterstown Rovers, Sean McDermotts and Westerns GFC all picked up wins on the final day of the league campaign before the Championship gets underway next weekend – with Rovers win on Saturday keeping them just a point off the summit of Division 2.
Tuesday evening’s defeat to St Joseph’s in Dromiskin appeared to throw a spanner in the works of Hunterstown’s league title ambitions but results elsewhere and a return to winning ways on Saturday evening have ensured they remain just a solitary point off leaders off current leaders St Brides. Paul Carrie’s goal three minutes into injury time won it.
Saturday’s 2-10 to 1-11 win over Naomh Fionnbarra was won in the most sensational circumstances. Trailing by one point in time added on, centre half back Carrie added to his first half penalty to steal victory from the jaws of almost certain defeat.
There wasn’t much to separate the sides throughout. The men from Togher held a two point advantage at the break 1-06 to 1-04. Carrie’s 24th minute penalty brought Rovers back to within one after Naomh lead courtesy of William Woods’ fisted effort beyond Niall Carrie. Brendan Lennon was the player brought down.
Two scores from Padraig Mathews and one each from Alan Landy, the game’s opening score, and Lennon meant Rovers kept in touch as the half time whistle blew. Landy himself had seen a goal effort come back off the post.
Richie Taaffe was the next man to see an effort crash off the woodwork shortly after the break. Padraig Mathews and Robbie McNeice pointed either side of Bernard Osbourne’s point as Rover reduced the deficit.
Woods’ – who finished with 1-06 – put over three frees in quick succession, with Rovers flailing in that department given Ryan Burns absence, but scores from Carrie and Brendan Lennon kept Hunterstown in touch.
With Lennon’s score leaving Naomh Fionnbarra with a 1-11 to 1-10 lead, the visitors to Pairc Baile Fiach knew that time was against Rovers to equalise or even win the game. However, the Finbarrs failed to deal with a ball into their defensive line. Carrie connected and his strong fist saw the ball sail over goalkeeper Daithi Woods and into the net.
HUNTERSTOWN ROVERS: Niall Carrie, Richard Cunningham, Brian Mathews, Martin Lennon, Patrick Taaffe, Paul Carrie (2-02), Richard Taaffe, Tony McKenna, Ryan Ward, Robbie McNeice (0-01), Brendan Lennon (0-03), Keith Brennan, Alan Landy (0-01), Padraig Mathews (0-03), Glen Mathews.
Subs: Paddy Mooney for Keith Brennan (32), Eddie Burke for Robbie McNeice (53), Conor Matthews for Ryan Ward (59).
Ardee St Marys clash with Mattock Rangers in Division 1, pencilled in for Saturday evening, was postponed due to the death of former Vice-Chairman and PRO Peter Corrigan. That game will now be played on Sunday July 30th in Ardee.
That left the only other local interest of the week in Division 3. Sean McDermotts and Westerns GFC both bounced back from midweek defeats to earn big victories.
The Seans are still on course for a top four league finish courtesy of a 13 point win over St Brides on Sunday evening. The club held their big Barndance fundraiser the previous evening but there was no sign of any hangover as they raced out of the traps to put the men from Knockbridge away.
Three first goals helped the Mountrush men build up an 11 point advantage by the break and despite a rally from St Brides, the Seans never took their foot off the gas as they extended that lead by the end. Peter Osbourne scored 2-02 from full forward while fellow forwards Kevin McMahon and Lorcan Myles bagged 1-04 and 1-03 respectively.
SEAN MCDERMOTTS: Mark McEneaney, Danny Reilly, Ciaran McMahon, Kevin McGahon, Sean McMahon, Kevin Carroll, Lee Ross, Emmett Duffy, Patrick Osbourne, David O’Neill (0-02), Tony Kelly (0-01), Ian Corbally (0-01), Lorcan Myles (1-03), Peter Osbourne (2-02), Kevin McMahon (1-04).
Subs: Alan O’Neill, BJ Matthews, Declan Carroll.
The Seans will fancy their chances of getting their Championship campaign off to a flyer on Friday evening as strugglers John Mitchels are the opposition in the first match of a Tallanstown double header.
The Ballybailie men suffered a confidence draining defeat on Saturday when they were smashed 4-15 to 0-04 by Stabannon Parnells. After the perennial strugglers were boosted by Tuesday’s win over Naomh Malachi, this loss marks a step backwards in their bid to stay in the Division.
Dowdallshill’s failure to win a league game so far this year may be what saves the Mitchels by the end.
Finally, Westerns moved further away from the scrap at the bottom with a win over Naomh Malachi on Saturday. Tommy Durnin scored nine points and Trevor Baylon three as the Westerns ran out 1-19 to 1-09 winners. Sub Andy Kerr got the goal. Read our match report by clicking here.
Weekend’s Louth GAA League Results
- DIV 1 – Ardee St Marys P-P Mattock Rangers
- DIV 2 – Hunterstown Rovers 2-10 Naomh Fionnbarra 1-11
- DIV 3 – Naomh Malachi 1-09 Westerns GFC 1-19
- DIV 3 – Stabannon Parnells 4-15 John Mitchels 0-04
- DIV 3 – Sean McDermotts 4-13 St Brides 2-06