Goals from James Hamill and Mark McKenna gave table-toppers Scotstown a six-point win away to Monaghan Harps on Saturday evening. Colm McElwain, McKenna, Fintan Treanor and Mark Corrigan played big parts for Scotstown, while Bernie Murphy, Aodhán Óg McAnespie and Niall Hahessy led the Harps challenge.
Peter O’Hara opened the scoring for Scotstown, but Bernie Murphy equalised from a free. Scotstown got the opening goal, though, on 10 minutes when a cross from Mark McKenna set up James Hamill to slide the ball to the net. Murphy replied for the Harps, but a Colm McElwain point kept Scotstown three ahead. Good points by Paul Rushe and Gary White reduced the Harps’ deficit to the minimum, but another McElwain point had Scotstown 1-3 to 0-4 up at half-time.
The Harps started the second half with a point from a free by White, but a point by Damien McArdle and substitute Pauric McCrudden (free) increased Scotstown’s lead, before good work by McElwain and McCrudden put McKenna through to finish soccer-style for their second goal. A well-taken point by Orin Heaphey was cancelled out by a free from Murphy, but a fine score by McElwain restored Scotstown’s seven-point lead. Niall Hahessy kicked a superb point for the Harps, who could have gotten back into it late on but for a goal-line block by Fintan Treanor from a goalbound shot by Murphy. Murphy pulled back a point for the Harps, but another good score by McElwain sealed Scotstown’s eighth win from 11 games and leave the Harps rooted to the bottom of the table.
Monaghan Harps: R McGann; P Sherry, Paddy Kelly, J Sherry; G Treanor, A Óg McAnespie (Capt.), C Devlin; S Coyle, G White (0-2, 1f); P Rushe (0-1), N Hahessy (0-1), Paul Kelly; A Mullen, B Murphy (0-4, 2f), B Driver.
Subs: J McCoy for Mullen (45), C Callan for Paul Kelly (50).
Scotstown: G McKenna; D McCarey, F Treanor, F McPhillips; M Corrigan, W Carroll, B McMeel; P O’Hara (0-1), D McCarville; C McElwain (0-4), A Heaphey, C Mohan; D McArdle (0-1), J Hamill (1-0), M McKenna (1-0).
Subs: P McCrudden (0-1f) for O’Hara (inj., H-T), O Heaphey (0-1) for A Heaphey (39), P Sherlock for Mohan (46), M McCague for Corrigan (inj., 52).
Referee: N Calvert (Rockcorry).