Mary’s finish stronger to claim Division 3 crown

After an evenly contested Gallogly Catering Division 3 Final on Sunday in Páirc Seán Mac Diarmada, St. Mary’s emerged as convincing victors after being pushed quite closely by Bornacoola for long period in the second half and from the outset.

After an evenly contested Gallogly Catering Division 3 Final on Sunday in Páirc Seán Mac Diarmada, St. Mary’s emerged as convincing victors after being pushed quite closely by Bornacoola for long period in the second half and from the outset.

It was an entertaining game throughout and each team enjoyed periods of dominance. St. Mary’s impressed at the start and forced Bornacoola to play second fiddle for most of the opening ten minutes.

Bornacoola came much more into the game in final 20 minutes of the first half with the result there was only a kick-of-a-ball between them at halftime.

Initially in the second half it was nip and tuck in the opening 12 minutes but after that Bornacoola took control and managed to grab a two point’s lead with a little over ten minutes remaining.

Bornacoola held a one point lead with a little over five minutes to go. Then St. Mary’s led by their 1994 Leitrim Connacht senior championship winning corner back Fergal Reynolds, who hand been introduced as a 53rd minute sub, staged a late rally after the former star defender slotted over a free.

After that St. Mary’s hit over three further unanswered points and finished with a relatively comfortable win as Bornacoola surprisingly seemed to run out of steam at the heal of the hunt.

Bornacoola drew first blood with Jonathan Duffy hitting over point. St. Mary’s got on level terms almost immediately with Michael McWeeney splitting the posts and he edged Mary’s two in front by the six minute when he shot over twice from play in rapid succession.

Bornacoola steadied when Damien Moran hit over an 8th minute point before Clement Cunniffe and Mark McCloskey traded points. St. Mary’s went two points up when James McGowan shot over from at the end of the first quarter.

Bornacoola had a chance to the grab the lead in the 18th minute when full-forward Damien Moran broke clear on goal with only keeper Barry Crowe to beat but Crowe made a fine save.

Cunniffe and Michael Duignan traded points but St. Mary’s increased their lead again almost immediately when Joe O’Rourke shot a goal chance narrowly over and then keeper Alan Croghan denied a 24th minute goal bound effort from James McGowan.

Bornacoola raised their game and got on level terms with St. Mary’s by the 30th minute after Fergal Howard and Paul Hackett as well as Mark McCloskey (free) all pointed.

Colm McWeeney replied with a point that edged St. Mary’s into 0-8 to 0-7 halftime lead. Bornacoola got on level terms within two minutes of the restart thanks to Mark McCloskey who tapped over an early second half free.

McCloskey was on target within the space of another two minutes from another free to put Bornacoola back in the lead for the first time in 30 minutes. Bornacoola’s lead was short lived with Alan Doherty putting St. Mary’s back on level terms after being put through by Michael McWeeney.

McWeeney put St. Mary’s back in front in the space of another minute when he fired over but it was level pegging again four minutes later when Jonathan Duffy fired over a point for Bornacoola.

The Bors went two clear when Damien Moran pointed after a pass from a pass from sub Kevin Shanley and Mark McCloskey converted a free.

Ray Mulvey and McCloskey swapped points before Mulvey closed the deficit to the minimum when he tapped over a free and St. Mary’s pulled the game out of the fire five minutes later when Fergal Reynolds drove a free over to level the exchanges.

Following that the Carrick men drove on and made victory secure before the end with points from play by Michael McWeeney, Clement Cunniffe and Alan Doherty.

St. Mary’s Kiltoghert

Barry Crowe; Dermot Turley, Conor Guckian, Cormac Greene; Michael Greene, James McGowan (0-1), Conor Farrell; Clement Cunniffe (0-3), Colin McWeeney (0-1), Francis Molloy, Michael McWeeney (0-5), Ray Mulvey (0-2); Ronan Kennedy, Alan Doherty (0-2), Joe O’Rourke (0-1). Subs Vinny McDermott for Guckian (25 mins); Fergal Reynolds (0-1) & John Healy for Turley & Kennedy (48 mins); Alan Duffy for Kennedy (55 mins).

Bornacoola

Bobby Shanley; John Reynolds, Brian Reilly, Noel McEnroe; Shane Conroy, Paul Hackett (0-1), Declan Shanley; Michael Duignan (0-1), Fergal Howard (0-1); Oliver Vaughan, Mark McCloskey (0-6), Johathan Duffy (0-2); Aidan Reilly, Damien Moran (0-2), Alan Croghan. Subs Kevin Shanley for A. Reilly (42 mins); John Bohan for Duffy (54 mins).

Referee: Pat Flanagan.