By Connie Kelly
Mayo ran out to a 9-point lead at the half and withstood a fierce Cork comeback to prevail, 2-10 to 3-6, Sunday.
Mayo came into this game with new players Seamus Mullen, Felim McGuinness and Declan Lloyd and benefited from the return of Brian McStay. With goals by Gary Woods and McGuinness in the 12th and 24th minute and points by Kevin Walsh, Declan O’Malley, Jarvis Toner, Brian McStay, Seamus Mullen and Gary Woods, Mayo looked to be in control early.
Cork, without goalie Tadgh Lucey (injured) and forward Anthony Buckley (injured), struggled but never quit. Gary Hanley had Cork on the board after five minutes and Eugene Connelly added two more before the half, but Cork came roaring back. Frank Delaney and Brendan Harrington dominated at centerfield and, as a result, Cork got goals from Eddie Driscoll, Richie Fleming and Anthony Buckley and points from Hanley, Connelly and Richie Fleming. Mick Lynch in the backs for Cork, along with Paul West and Bernie Alcock, gave it everything they had. But Mayo would not be denied. Paddy Clarke as usual was solid in the backs, along with Kevin Walsh and Kevin Comer.
Kerry 3-9, St. Pat’s 1-10
St. Pat’s, last years intermediate champions, took this senior football game to Kerry for much of the hour and at the half trailed by a single point, 1-5 to 1-4. The pairing of Mick Kearns and Sean Flaherty at centerfield for the Pat’s gave Darren Lee and Brendan Behan of Kerry a busy hour of it. Flaherty had three good points from play and Mickey Joe Hynes added a goal and a point for St. Pat’s. Mark O’Brien had another good game for Kerry, knocking one over after four minutes. Behan added another from play and O’Brien sent one over from a free. A goal by Derek Byrne after he was set up by O’Brien got Kerry fired up. Once again it was O’Brien sending Fergus Stack through for a lovely point. Conor Muldoon’s shot hit the crossbar and was cleared by the Pat’s. Denis Sayers of Kerry had his goal disallowed, while at the other end the Pat’s came close.
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Mark O’Brien had Kerry’s first point of the second half after 8 minutes. Hynes answered St. Pat’s four minutes later and on the next kick-out Mick Kearns sent Hynes through for yet another point and after 18 minutes of play it was level. O’Brien had Kerry one up with a free two minutes later and from then on Kerry took over. Pat Fenton and Pat Buttimer replaced Behan and Muldoon. Derek Byrne added another goal for Kerry. Kerry’s backline of Rory Lyne, John Sullivan, Paul Clifford, Mike O’Brien and Niall Sheehy closed down the Pa’ts forwards. Hynes sent over two from frees, but Denis Sayers’s goal sealed it for Kerry. Niall Sheehy and Garrett Golden traded points to give Kerry its first win of the championships.
McAnespie’s 1-11, Connemara 0-10
The Mawn Cup final was a classic. Connemara Gaels played some excellent football and went in at the half leadig by 0-7 to 1-3. Vinny O’Malley had the Gaels up two points after four minutes but Paddy McCusker and Conor McKeever had the sides level four minutes later. Mark Loughman and Alan O’Connor, two outstanding footballers put the Gaels up by two after 12 minutes. Toss Hainsworth added one for McAnespies after 16 minutes and for the next four minutes McAnespies applied a lot of pressure on the Gaels backs, with McKeever finally hammering it to the back of the net.
After 20 minutes it was 1-3 for McAnespies to 0-4 for the Gaels. But the Gaels came storming right back with three points from O’Malley (two frees and one from play) to make it 1-3 to 0-7.
In the second half, the Gaels went three points up with two lovely points by Shane Kavanagh. McAnespies, under a lot of pressure, kicked several bad wides and looked like they could lose this game. McKeever pulled one back after 10 minutes. The game then went eight minutes without a score. McKeever restored some confidence in McAnespies with a series of points. Further points by McGill, Farmer and Nigel Regan kept McAnespies’ winning record intact. Kerry will face McAnespies next week.
Tipperary 3-13, Cork 0-11
The Tipperary hurlers were much too strong for Cork in this Cup final. Brendan Harrington and the Howard brothers tried hard to contain Tipp but to no avail. Clinton Hennessy, in goals for Tipp, stopped just about everything and Chris Dunn, Kenny Laurance and Michael McGrath put over scores at will. But it was two new arrivals from Killmoyle in Kerry who impressed the most. Richard Gentleman registering 1-3 for himself and Padraig Sheehy a goal.
St. Brigids 4-22, Erin Rovers 0-2.
Paidraic Pearse 3-14, Wolde Tones 2-4
Cuchulainns 4-18, Limerick 1-11
Wolfe Tones 2-12, Parnells1-11