NFL D4 Rd 6: Sligo 2-15 v Carlow 2-19

Back 18/10/2020 @ 09:58 | mainnews | NFL D4 Rd 6: Sligo 2-15 v Carlow 2-19

The National leagues resumed with Sligo making the long journey to Carlow on Saturday. When the leagues were suspended Sligo knew that two wins from two would result in promotion to division 3. During lockdown Carlow manager Turlough O'Brien stepped down and was subsequently replaced by ex Sligo manager Neil Carew meaning his first official game in charge was against a team where he knew most players very well. Last year Sligo lost in Carlow where a slow start and the suffocating defence of the Carlow men saw us go down in a very low scoring game. Both teams were relegated and had a lot to play for here with regard to getting promoted at the first attempt. Unlike last year this was a high scoring rollercoast ride throughout with the result in doubt till the 6th minute of additional time in the second half. 

Sean Murphy made his competitive start in the Sligo jersey and was involved in the first minute as Carlows Paul Broderick kicked over and it was the fifth minute when Pat Hughes ran out onto a ball and turned and flung over the first of Sligo scores for the evening. A minute late Sligo went in front when Mikey Gordon bore down on goal from 45m and no defender met him, leaving him to drive to the roof of the net. Carlow responded with points from Foley and Dunphy and were dominating the kickouts of both sides with a serious physical presence. Hughes brought us back level with another good run, turn and point but at the water break further points from Broderick and Jordan Morrisey left Sligo in arrears. 

Sligo hit the next four points after the break from Gaughan (1f) getting two and Seán Carrabine and Paddy O'Connor to put Sligo back in front. Broderick from play and a free split by a Paddy O'Connor free left Sligo in front by 1 at the break 1-7 v 0-9.

Broderick hit another point from another free but Red Óg Murphy hit a purple patch and scored a wonder point from close on the endline after breaking two tackles. Pat Hughes who had a very good game until injury meant he had to leave the fray intercepted a short Carlow kickout and two quick handpasses had Murphy driving at goal and rifling to the top left of the net. Hughes from the next kickout hit his third from play to put Sligo up by 6 with 7 minutes played in the half. If Sligo held on at this stage it felt like they would have won out however Ross Dunphy hit an unstoppable shot to the top corner of the net when surrounded by three defenders from the next play to cut the lead to three. 

Gerard O'Kelly Lynch finished a good move with a point in the 9th minute. By the water break it was level with three from Broderick (1f) and a Dunphy score. The last quarter of the game was up and down the field with both sides looking like they had it won. John Francis Carr, Barry Gorman and debutant Ryan Feehily entered the fray as did David Quinn close to the finish. Carlow went up by three points going into the six minutes of injury time with  a point from Chris Blake and a goal from Conor Crowley who had just come onto the field when a kickout went a distance but all of Sligo seemed wrongfooted. Carlow went to get the insurance point and Pat Hughes managed to get his fingertips to a point attempt that allowed Eamonn Kilgannon to knock it down from over the bar. Hughes appeared to sustain a shoulder injury and with all our subs on the field we finished out with 14. The team showed great grit to come back and three Liam Gaughan frees had levelled the game but Carlows superiority of the kickout proved decisive with Paul Broderick and Darragh Foley hitting two winning points in less than a minute to take the win and also to take a chance of promotion out of Sligo hands.

Limerick make the trip to Markievicz Park next weekend.

Scorers - 
Sligo - Liam Gaughan  0-5 (4f), Red Óg Murphy 1-2, Pat Hughes 0-3, Mikey Gordon 1-0, Paddy O'Connor 0-3 (2f), Seán Carrabine, Gerard O'Kelly Lynch 0-1 each

Carlow - Paul Broderick 0-11(5f), Ross Dunphy 1-2, Conor Crowley 1-0, Chris Blake 0-2, Darragh Foley, Jordan Morrisey 0-1 each

Sligo  - Eamonn Kilgannon, Nathan Mullen, Eddie McGuinness, Seán Murphy, Darragh Cummins, Paul McNamara, Gerard O'Kelly Lynch, Paddy O'Connor(capt), Paul Kilcoyne, Mikey Gordon, Conor Griffin, Seán Carrabine, Red Óg Murphy, Pat Hughes, Liam Gaughan   
Subs: John F Carr for McNamara, Ryan Feehily for Sean Murphy, Paul McNamara for Kilcoyne, Barry Gorman for Griffin, David Quinn for O'Connor

Sligo: Eamonn Kilgannon,