Naomh Conaill are sitting on top of the All-County Football League Division One table following this two point away victory over Malin.
Naomh Conaill 0-17
The result means that Paddy Campbell’s side have leap-frogged early front runners St Eunan’s and are one point better off than the O’Donnell Park men with a game in hand. St Eunan’s game against Gaoth Dobhair was off.
Malin started the stronger with a point by Matthew Byrne in the first minute. This was followed by a goal by John Gerard McLaughlin in the fifth minute and another Matthew Byrne point before Naomh Conaill got their account up and running. Veteran midfielder Johnny McLoone kicked Naomh Conaill’s opener on eight minutes.
But Malin, who were firing on all cylinders, added further points from Terence Doherty and Brendan Mc Laughlin to forge into a 1-4 to 0-1 lead by the tenth minute.
However, Naomh Conaill refused to panic and responded well with points from John O’Malley, Brendan McDyer, Seamus Corcoran and Martin Regan to leave the match delicately poised at 1-4 to 0- 6 in favour of the locals with five minutes remaining in the half.
Two pointed frees from Matthew Byrne to one in response from Hugh Gallagher saw Malin go in 1-6 to 0-7 in front at half-time.
Naomh Conaill started the second half in determined fashion and three points by substitute A J Gallagher had the team from the South West in front for the first time in the game. Malin’s Kieran McColgan levelled the sides with a score from play before points from McLoone and McDyer restored the visitors’ lead.
However, Malin were soon back in front thanks to a Martin Lafferty goal to leave it Malin 2-7, Naomh Conaill 0-12.
The locals increased their lead when Brendan McLaughlin pointed with the goal at his mercy. However, Malin could raise just one more white flag as Naomh Conaill produced a strong finish with O’Malley, Eunan Doherty, Regan and A J Gallagher all lofting over points.
Malin: D. Lafferty; M. McLaughlin, D Harkin, G Farren; K McColgan, C Byrne, C Farren; A Byrne, J G McLaughlin; B McLaughlin, P McLaughlin, Matt Byrne; T Doherty, M Byrne, M Lafferty.
Naomh Conaill: S McGrath; S Molloy, J Campbell, H Gallagher; C Ellis, K Brennan, M Boyle; M Regan, J McLoone; S Corcoran, M Gallagher, E Doherty, J O’Malley, D Gallagher, B McDyer.