The evergreen J P Rooney, Naomh Mairtin taking on Geraldines defender Paul Clarke. (Pic: Arthur Kinahan)
Anchor Tours Senior Football Championship Group D
Naomh Mairtin 4-16 Geraldines 0-4
Naomh Mairtin comfortably booked their place in the knockout stages of the Senior Football Championship after this comprehensive victory over the Geraldines in Group D who now face a relegation play off to retain their status at this grade.
Fergal Reel’s side made good use of a tumultuous wind and led by 1-12 to 0-0 by the first half’s close, Sean Healy was in particularly fine form, kicking two magnificent scores from distance.
Conor Morgan was equally impressive in finding the range as the Jocks used the wind cleverly shooting from distance on occassions.
Sean Healy himself finished with a commendable 14 possessions over the hour, with Sam Mulroy touching the size 5 on 15 occasions. The defending champions also won over 70 percent of the Geraldines first half kickouts.
Mulroy capitalised on a little bit of good fortune as Conor Whelan’s pass was intended for the arriving Evan Whelan, however as usual the county star made the most of the chance to calmly slot passed Gers’ keeper Sean McEneaney to make it 1-10 to 0-0 in first half stoppage time.
Conor Morgan then helped himself to another white flag just before the break moments after JP Rooney converted an advanced mark to make it 1-12 to no score at the break.
The gap should have even been extended, but for some disappointing wides from a Martins point of view and for a wonderful intervention on the goal line from the Geralidines’ Jack Traynor after JP Rooney’s palmed effort had beaten McEneaney.
The Geraldines made a trio of changes at half time, one of which Michael Rogers kicked arguably the point of the night from the stand sideline in Dunleer to make it 1-14 to 0-3 after 45 minutes. A Shane O’Hanlon free finally got the Haggardstown side on the scoreboard from a close range free.
Second half sub for the Martins Val Leddy got his name on the scoresheet as the Jocks rang the changes during that second period. The Martins however, were in no mood for sentimentality as they rammed in three goals in a row.
The lively Conor Whelan setting up John Clutterbuck for a close range major, before Whelan helped himself to two goals of his own and almost bagged a hattrick. His final effort fizzed over the bar to wrap up an emphatic victory for the Martins, whose quest for back-to-back Joe Wards is still very much alive as they face St Josephs in the quarter finals.
Naomh Mairtin: Craig Lynch; Mick Fanning, Thomas Sullivan, Conor Healy; John Clutterbuck (1-0), Sean Healy (0-2) Conor Morgan (0-3); Wayne Campbell, Evan Whelan; Jack Murphy, Eoghan Callaghan, Stephen Campbell (0-2); Conor Whelan (2-2, 0-2 frees), Sam Mulroy (1-5, 0-2 frees, 0-1 mark), JP Rooney (0-1 mark). Subs: Val Leddy (0-1) for Rooney (35), Brian McQuilan for Murphy (45), Conor Smyth for Sean Healy (47), Joe McGrane for Mulroy (50), Cian Sands for Stephen Campbell (50).
Geraldines: Sean McEneaney; Nicky Mackin, Dan Corcoran, Paul Clarke; Jack Traynor, Gareth Neacy, Ferghal McDonald; Matt Corcoran, Stephen Reidy; Ben Mooney, Josh Arrowsmith, Brian Cafferty; Neil Jones, Shane O’Hanlon (0-1 free), Shaun Callan. Subs: James Craven for Callan (HT), Michael Rogers (0-2, 0-1 45) for Cafferty (HT), Conor Rafferty (0-1 free) for Jones (HT), Paddy Hoey for Mooney (49).
Referee: Paul Kneel.
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.