Kevin McLoughlin was central to Knockmore’s victory.
Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO
Colm Gannon reports from Elvery’s MacHale Park
A MASSIVE DEFENSIVE performance by Knockmore was the backbone to their win over Breaffy in the Mayo senior semi-final in Castlebar today.
The north Mayo men were the better team from pillar to post and were well deserving winners over a fancied Breaffy side.
The second half was a tense tight affair with Peter Naughton’s injury time insurance point the vital score.
.@Gaa_Knockmore are going to their first @MayoGAA SFC Final since 2009! They were 7/2 outsiders but beat Breaffy by 0-12 to 1-7. #mayogaa
— Mayo News – Sport (@mayonewssport) October 23, 2016
Source: Mayo News – Sport/Twitter
With five minutes left in normal time Knockmore led 0-11 to 1-5 thanks to second half scores from Sean Ruttledge, Kieran Lanagan and Kevin McLoughlin. Breaffy’s solitary score at that stage in the half came from a Liam Irwin free.
A point from sub Gareth Dunne cut the gap to just two points, three minutes from the end of normal time and a free from Robbie Hennelly from 50m cut the gap back to just one.
Knockmore were reduced to 14 men just before the end of normal time when Andrew Keane was shown a second yellow.
With Breaffy looking to break from the back for a levelling score, they were turned over by some great hassling by Knockmore and Naughton tapped it over the bar to send them into their first county final since 2009.
Underdogs Knockmore led by 0-8 to 1-4 at half time, with Kevin McLoughlin’s constant running driving them forward at every opportunity. McLoughlin kicked the first score of the day after only 30 seconds with an effort from long range.
By the 18 minute mark the north Mayo men were five to the good leading 0-7 to 0-2, with Keith Ruttledge scoring two points in that run and Kieran Langan and another McLoughlin effort edging them into the lead.
A Liam Irwin point from a free, his second of the day cut the gap back to four and on 22 minutes, Tommy O’Reilly found the back of the net from close range to bring Breaffy back into the game.
Both sides hit a point each after that before the break with Robbie Hennelly kicking a ’45 and Peter Naughton hitting his third of the half
Scorers for Knockmore: Peter Naughton 0-5 (0-3f), Kieran Langan, Kevin McLoughlin, Keith Ruttledge 0-2 each, Sean Ruttledge 0-1.
Scorers for Breaffy: Liam Irwin 0-3 (0-3f), Tommy O’Reilly 1-0, Robbie Hennelly 0-2 (0-2f), Kevin Curry, Gareth Dunne 0-1 each.
1. Robert Hennelly
2. Michael Hall
3. David Gavin
4. Colm Dravins
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5. Gerry Jennings
6. Michael Jennings
7. Dylan Cannon
8. Peter Dravins
11. Aidan O’Shea
10. Rory Martyn
14. Conor O’Shea
12. Robert Fadden
13. Liam Irwin
25. Tommy O’Reilly
15. Kevin Curry
27: Seamus O’Shea for Kevin Curry (34)
18. James Minogue for Robert Fadden (50)
20. Gareth Dunne for Conor O’Shea (51)
9. Brian Howley for Peter Dravins (57)
1. Aiden Kilcoyne
2. Marcus Park
3. Shane McHale
17. Diarmuid Walsh
5. Justin Rice
6. Andrew Keane
7. Nathan Hardy
8. Thomas Clarke
9. Kevin McLoughlin
10. Darren McHale
11. Colm Reape
12. Keith Ruttledge
13. Sean Ruttledge
14. Kieran Langan
15. Peter Naughton
18. Brian Gibbons for Colm Reape (53)
23. James Ruddy for Thomas Clarke (58)
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