Reilly intervention stops Sligo grabbing late draw

Cavan mixed the sublime with the ridiculous before securing their first points of the Division 3 season.

The hosts lit up a dank Kingspan/Breffni Park in the first half to go 0-10 to 0-3 ahead but Sligo were a transformed outfit after the break, hitting an unanswered 1-4, and came within inches of sneaking a draw.

Cavan Gaels speedsters Niall Smith, Kevin Meehan and Martin Dunne were a revelation, making little of the absence of their club colleague Sean Johnston during a brilliant first half.

The lead was extended to nine points, 0-12 to 0-3, after 41 minutes before Sligo hit a purple patch when three points by Adrian Marren sandwiched a Colm McGee goal (49).

However, a classy Martin Dunne point stopped the rot for Cavan and when Sligo’s Brendan Egan was sent off for a second yellow card it seemed like Cavan would coast home.

Yet the westerners dominated the final 15 minutes and were desperately unlucky not to snatch a draw as sub David Kelly’s close-range effort on goal was brilliantly blocked by Damien Reilly.

Scorers for Cavan: M Dunne 0-4 (2f), G McKiernan 0-3, K Meehan (1f), B Fitzpatrick 0-2 each, R Maloney-Derham, D Givney, N Smith 0-1 each.

Scorers for Sligo: A Marren 0-5 (2f), C McGee 1-2 (1 45), M Breheny 0-1.

CAVAN: J Reilly; D Barkey, D Reilly, R Flanagan; B Watters, P O’Reilly, R Maloney-Derham; D Givney, G McKiernan; N Smith, M McKeever, K Meehan; N McDermott, E Keating, M Dunne.

Subs: B Fitzpatrick for E Keating (inj, 3); N Murray for K Meehan (60); D McKiernan for B Watters (65); D O’Dowd for N McDermott (65); S Jordan for N Smith (69).

SLIGO: P Greene; C Harrison, B Kennedy, R Donovan; J Davey, S McManus, P McGovern; E Mullen, B Egan; M Breheny, A Costello, P Hughes; C McGee, J Clarke, A Marren.

Subs: T Taylor for E Mullen (inj, 12); J Martyn for B Kennedy (inj, 27); D Rooney for P McGovern (34) M Quinn for J Davey (43); D Kelly for M Breheny (47).

Referee: P Fox (Westmeath).

More in this section


Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up


Have the Irish Examiner delivered to your door. No delivery charge. Just pay the cover price.