Drumlin Group of Credit Unions Senior Football League
Castleblayney 0-11 Monaghan Harps 0-9 18/5/11
Castleblayney ground out a two-point win over Monaghan Harps in a keenly-contested SFL game at Toome on Wednesday evening. In Blayney’s first ‘home’ game since their own pitch closed for redevelopment, they raced into a six-point lead before having to hold off a strong comeback from the Harps. Martin McElroy, Paddy Mallon, Cormac Brady, Darren Daly and Ciarán Hughes played key roles for Blayney, while Shane Smyth, Donal Hahessy, Mark McCaughey, Stephen Driver and Gareth Treanor led the Harps’ challenge.
Castleblayney started brightly with a brace of frees by Martin McElroy, both after fouls on Dermot McArdle, although a pointed free by Neil McAdam kept the Harps in touch. McElroy converted his third free after a foul on Paddy Mallon, who added a good point from play, but a Donal Hahessy free kept the Harps in touch. Ciarán Hughes kicked a point for Blayney after a one-two with Brian McGuinness and they moved further clear with a point from Paddy Conlon, following good work by Ciarán Hanratty and Jerry Brady. Hahessy replied from a 30-metre free after a foul on McAdam, but Blayney hit the last three points of the half to double their lead to six. McElroy kicked a fine score from a tight angle before fisting over after a Hanratty shot came back off the upright and Darren Daly added a point to make it 0-9 to 0-3 in favour of the Faughs at half-time.
It took nine minutes for the first score of the second half to arrive, through a point from McAdam after a quick free from Gary White, but the Harps tagged on four points in as many minutes. Donal Hahessy kicked a nice point from play after good approach play by Gareth Treanor and Shane Smyth and the corner-forward then tapped over a 13-metre free for a foul on Niall McKenna. A well-taken right-footed point by Hahessy closed the gap to two, after a pass from McAdam, who added a point at the end of a well-worked move involving Stephen Driver, Mark McCaughey and Treanor. Blayney looked to have won a penalty 12 minutes from time, but Dermot McArdle’s reaction not only saw his side lose the spot-kick but he was also sent off, leaving them to see out the game a man down. 20-metre frees by McElroy and Hanratty restored a three-point gap and although Treanor got a point back for the Harps, Blayney held on for their third win of the season.
Castleblayney: P McBennett; C Brady, M Treanor, K Duffy; D Malone, P Mallon (0-1), D Daly (0-1); C Hughes (Capt., 0-1), B McGuinness; A Irwin, C Hanratty (0-1f), P Conlon (0-1); J Brady, M McElroy (0-6, 4f), D McArdle.
Subs: P Treanor for McGuinness (48 mins), D Hughes for Conlon (49).
Monaghan Harps: M Hughes; M McCaughey, S Driver (Capt.), N McKenna; G Treanor (0-1), S Smyth, D Hughes; P Coyle, G White; N Scott, N McAdam (0-3, 1f), N Hahessy; D Hahessy (0-5, 3f), E McArdle, D Fanning.
Subs: A White for D Hughes (inj., 8), S McAleer for Fanning (inj., 30).
Referee: D Boylan (Killanny).