Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Mayo v Donegal July 20

Gareth Concar gets around his man.

Donegal 0-16 Mayo 1-4

Donegal dispatched Mayo with little difficulty on a hot and humid afternoon. Mayo kept it level thru the end of the first quarter thanks to a somewhat fortunate goal, but after that Donegal imposed themselves on the game were always in control. From the middle of the field to lively corner forwards, Gareth Concar and Declan Murphy, Donegal dominated proceedings and set themselves up well for the run-in to the playoffs.

The expectations were for Donegal to win this game, and the first half underlined the superiority of the northerners. Mayo put a point and goal together midway through the half, but spent most of the time trying to hold their opponents at bay rather than thinking too much about engineering scores of their own. Donegal put four points over the bar before Mayo got off the ground. Gareth Concar, Ronan McNeilis, and Kevin Curran each pointed for Donegal before Ronan Rochfort got Mayo on the scoreboard after 12 minutes. Mayo leveled the scores soon after with a goal from Sean Gerrity that might have Donegal management concerned with the defending.. A point attempt came high off the post, and Gerrity was waiting unimpeded to gather the ball and slip it below the keeper. All square. Not for long though as Donegal put another six points over the bar in the latter part of the half, while Mayo laboured to match their opponents. Gareth Concar and Declan Murphy were full of running in the Donegal full forward line. Concar was a major threat for Donegal, and had three points in his name before the half was out. Dualtach Molloy pointed twice before half time to put Donegal at a six point advantage.

Mayo claimed the first two scores of the second half – both points, and almost goaled but Pat Hickey’s shot came back into play off the inside of the post. Had it gone in it could have rattled Donegal nerves and provided Mayo with a platform to attempt a comeback. Donegal center forward, Eamonn Murphy played a part in Donegal’s response. Murphy put a dead ball over the bar with a free from 50 yards, and then found Dualtach Molloy for a second point to restore Donegal’s six point advantage. Gervaise Toner fisted over a great point for Mayo after 10 minutes, but that would be it for the westerners. Donegal went on to finish the game with four unanswered points, Molly, Concar, and two from Murphy, and put themselves in a good position senior championship playoff hunt.

Donegal: N. McConnell, T. Maguire, S. Lee, P. Witherow, K. Cunningham, N. Hegarty, D. McNulty, Ronan McNeilis (0-1), Kevin Curran (0-1), Eamonn Murphy (0-2), Dualtach Molloy (0-4), Gareth Concar (0-4), Declan Murphy (0-4).. Mayo: D. O’Malley, S. Clifford, M. Murphy, C. Clifford, M. Hunt, T. Scanlon, Ronan Rochford (0-2), C. Brennan, Rory Gavin (0-1), Gervase Toner (0-2), Sean Gerrity (1-0), P. Hickey, B. McStay.

By Rory O'Donnell

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