Ulster MFL Shield final: Resurgent Sligo stage late smash and grab act

April 15, 2019

A view of St Tiernach's Park, Clones, the home of Ulster GAA.


Sligo 1-9

Down 1-8

A resurgent Sligo staged a late smash and grab act to take the Ulster minor football league Shield back to the Yeat's County at the expense of Down in this entertaining contest that was played in very windy and bitterly cold conditions in Clones on Saturday afternoon.

The score that clinched it for the Sligo lads was a goal deep into stoppage time as they laid siege to the Down citadel with Jack Lavin pulling on a loose ball that looked as if it might have been deflected into the net off a Down defender.

Down had the better of the opening exchanges and led by 1-2 to a point after five minutes, the goal by John McGovern in the fourth minute. He had a chance of a second goal from a penalty some nine minutes into the second half but his shot went over the bar.

Down led at half-time by 1-4 to 0-3 and they still held a four points lead entering the final quarter.

Sligo rallied strongly in that final quarter and three unanswered points inside three minutes from Lee Dignan, Owen Smith from a free and substitute Oisin Gorman brought the margin down to the minimum with four minutes remaining.

Oisin Savage gave Down some breathing space with a point from a free two minutes into stoppage time, but there was late drama as Sligo clinched it with that late goal.

Sligo finished the game with fourteen players after the dismissal of Ciaran McKeown on a second yellow card nine minutes into the second half.

Sligo: J Teape, S Muldowney, J Lavin 1-0, C Mulligan 0-1, L Casserley. C McKeown, C Finn, J Heaney, O McDonagh, L Dignan 0-2, P Smith 0-3 (2f), J Davitt. C Matthews 0-1, G Duffy, D Walshe. Subs: O Gorman 0-2 for C Matthews.

Down: A Furlong, P McCarthy, S Donegan, D McMullen, R Campbell, J Gray, R Magill, O Murdock, P McAvoy, S McCusker, J McGovern 1-2 (0-1pen), P Clancy, O Savage 0-5 (3f), C McLoughlin, M Hynes. Subs: O Cunningham for P McAvoy, N Sloane for D McMullen, E Swail for P Clancy, C Laird for S McCusker.

Referee: C Dorrian (Donegal).

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