Mayo 3-15 Monaghan 1-18
The saying goals win games certainly was used in Castlebar on Sunday as Mayo recorded a 3 point win over Monaghan to book a place in the league final with Kerry next weekend. It incidentally will be the first league final for the Westerners in 7 years.
Mayo to their credit played superb football at times. Kevin McLoughlin hit two goals in the opening period, while the third goal arrived in the second half as Ryan Wylie deflected the ball into his goal on the 50th minute. Mayo despite playing against a gale force wind took a 2-07 to 0-06 lead at the break. Kevin McLoughlin scored a goal on 6 minutes. Jason Doherty, James McCormack, Aidan O’Shea, and Brian Reape all registered points. Monaghan the impressive Jack McCarron to come up with the goods in attack. He kicked 5 first half points all from play, Conor McManus was the only other Farney county scorer in the half. Mayo were dealt a blow when Dave Clarke was taken off due to injury sustained in a collision with Darren Hughes, Robbie Hennelly replaced him for the remainder of the game.
Monaghan’s hopes of winning the game were dealt a significant blow after wing back Fintan Kelly was dismissed by Tipperary referee Derek O’Mahony. Monaghan however stuck to the game plan and were rewarded on 48 minutes when Darren Hughes netted. Mayo were ahead 2-10 to 1-10 now, but it was to get better for James Horan’s men as Kevin McLoughlin palmed the ball past Rory Beggan. That was the third Mayo goal, Brendan Harrison, Jason Doherty and McLoughlin all raised white flags which gave Mayo an eight point lead at the end of the three quarter stage.
The game looked well and truly over but Monaghan hit six unanswered points with McManus pointing four frees meant the game would go right down to the wire. However Mayo held on for a win, as Donie Vaughan and Diarmuid O’Connor sealed a win.
Mayo: D Clarke; S Coen, B Harrison (0-1), E O’Donoghue; P Durcan, C Barrett, J McCormack (0-1); M Ruane, A O’Shea (0-1); F Boland (0-3), J Doherty (0-2, 1f), D O’Connor (0-1); K McLoughlin (2-2), D Coen (0-1), C Diskin.
Subs: B Reape (0-1, mark) for Diskin (inj, 25); R Hennelly (0-1, 1f) for Clarke (inj, 33); J Gibbons for Ruane (47); D Drake for O’Donoghue (54); J Carr for Coen (60); D Vaughan (0-1) for McCormack; C Treacy for Boland (74).
Monaghan: R Beggan (0-1, 1f); B Kerr, D Wylie, R Wylie (1-0, OG; K O’Connell, C Boyle, K Duffy; D Hughes (1-0), N McAdam; R McAnespie (0-1), D Malone, F Kelly; C McCarthy (0-1), J McCarron (0-7, 1f), C McManus (0-8, 5fs).
Subs:S O’Hanlon for Malone; D Mone for McAdam (49); V Corey for D Wylie (55); O Duffy for McCarthy (71).
Referee: D O’Mahony (Tipperary