Daly stars to sink Sligo

Connacht Minor Championship Quarter-Final Roscommon 0-14 Sligo 2-7

Lorcan Daly proved to be the Roscommon hero on Saturday evening with his late 64th minute point which ensured Roscommon knocked Sligo out of this year’s Connacht Minor Championship. In truth for long periods the game looked like it was heading for extra-time and even looked like the home side might hold on for victory, but Daly had other ideas as he kicked three points in the second half.

   The home side had started well with the very talented Liam Gaughan kicking the opening point after some good work from Mickey Gordon, who flicked the ball out to Gaughan. It got even better a minute later when Sligo got their first goal, Sean Carrabine finishing a fine team move involving Gaughan and Conan Marren.

  Gerard Perry then extended that gap to five points as Sligo looked well on top. During this Sligo dominance Roscommon lost their captain Aidan Dowd to a black card on 9 minutes but they did register a score when Boyle man Cian McKeon finally got Roscommon off the mark minutes later.

  Ciaran Lennon reduce the margin back to within three points but Sligo replied through Gaughan, who was causing a serious amount problems for Kieran Kilkenny’s side. James Fetherstone did have the score back within three points once again but a Sligo brace from Carrabine extended the lead before the hosts were dealt a blow with an injury to Stephen Mulligan on 26 minutes which meant there would be 9 minutes of added time at the end of the first half.

  It was Roscommon who profited mostly from the injury-time as they hit four unanswered points before the break, the best of which came from man of the match Keith Murphy to leave the score at half-time at 1-5 to 0-7 in favour of Sligo. Roscommon started the second half well and took the lead for the first time in the match following points from McKeon and a free from Daniel Glynn. But Sligo came right back at Roscommon with a super goal from Patrick O’Connor as his effort went into the top right corner of the net for Sligo’s second goal on 36 minutes.  Gaughan followed up with a point moments later to leave three points between the sides.

  Two points for Roscommon left just one point between the sides after Daly and Murphy were on the mark. It could have been even better for them on 54 minutes as a Glynn flick was well saved and when McKeon kicked the 45’ wide it looked like the home side would win this match when Sean Carrabine added this third point of the match.

  But Roscommon finished the half the strongest and when Ciaran Lennon left the sides level it looked like the game was set for extra-time – but Daly had other ideas as he landed the winning score. Sligo were reduced to 14 men before the full-time whistle, with Brian Mahon seeing red.

Roscommon: Liam Cregg; Adam Whyte, Aidan Dowd, Damien Duff; Lorcan Daly (0-3), Sean Fallon, James Fetherstone (0-2); Luke Mollahan, Conor Shanagher; Keith Murphy (0-2), Daniel Glynn (0-1, 2fs), Michael McGloin; Cathal Heneghan, Ciaran Lennon (0-2), Cian McKeon (0-3, 1f): Subs used: Pauric Calpin for Aidan Dowd (Black card 9), Matthew Bourke for Cathal Heneghan (half-time), Niall Murray for Luke Mollahan (half-time), Callum Fahey (0-1) for Matthew Bourke (42), Ronan Dowd for Keith Murphy (60).

Sligo: Eamonn Kilgannon; Brian Cox, Adrian Cummins, Brian Mahon; Stephen Mulligan, Rory McHugh, Luke Towey; Mickey Gordon, Patrick O’Connor (1-0); Sean Carrabine (1-3), Liam Gaughan (0-3), Evan Lavin; Gerard Perry (0-1), Conan Marren, Daire Kearns. Subs used: Dean Carroll for Stephen Mulligan (26), Joe McHugh for Evan Lavin (35), Barry Gorman for Daire Kearns (50).

Referee: Liam Devenney (Mayo).

Man of the Match: Keith Murphy (Roscommon)