Mallow 0-14 Éire Óg 0-7
MALLOW thundered back into contention in Group 2 of the Bob Secours Senior A Football Championship with a surprisingly comfortable win over Éire Óg in Mourneabbey on Saturday evening.
They bounced back from their opening defeat to group leaders Kiskeam by revealing a hunger and intensity that proved too much for last year's premier intermediate winners.
The critical period came late in the opening half which resulted in Mallow gaining a vice-like grip on proceedings and never letting go as Éire Óg's number was up long before the finish.
Such was Mallow's authority that apart from the double-score victory they also accumulated a dozen wides, four more than their opponents.
There was little to predict Mallow's scoring blitz on the run-up to the break because the sides were level four times by the 24th minute.
And especially as Éire Óg created the only goal-scoring opportunity as early as the ninth minute, when Ronan O'Toole powered through only to be foiled by a super one-handed save by keeper Kevin Doyle, who did very well to hold the stinging shot, diving low to his left.
The teams struggled to find scores against heavily fortified defences, but all that changed, when Mallow pieced together a five-point swing with a string of impressive points.
Kevin Sheehan began the sequence with his second point of the opening half before the influential Darragh Moyihan helped Michael O'Rourke for a 0-6 to 0-4 lead after 27 minutes.
The same player kicked a brilliant free from close to the left touchline, via the inside of an upright almost immediately and this was quickly followed by Sean McDonald's score.
It got worse for Éire Óg, when Liam Sheehan was shown a black card and Moynihan completed the scoring in the first minute of injury-time.
The 14 men managed to restrict Mallow to that single score by the time Sheehan returned with Daniel Goulding reducing the deficit with a 35th minute free, 0-9 to 0-5.
But, Mallow snuffed out any prospect of a fight-back by adding three more points in as many minutes, Cian O'Riordan, Kieran O'Sullivan and Sheehan nailing important points.
At 0-12 to 0-6 by the second water break, Mallow were in full control.
Scorers for Mallow: C O'Riordan 0-4 (0-1 f), K Sheehan 0-3, M O'Rourke 0-3 (0-1 f), D Moynihan, K O'Sullivan, S McDonald and J Dillon 0-1 each.
Éire Óg: D Goulding 0-4 (0-3 f), C O'Callaghan, B Hurley and D O'Herlihy 0-1 each.
MALLOW: K Doyle; O Carroll, J Loughrey, A Cashman; T McEvoy, S Merritt, M Taylor; D Moynihan, E Stanton; K O'Sullivan, R Harkin, M O'Rourke; C O'Riordan, K Sheehan, S McDonald.
Subs: J Dillon for O'Rourke injured 57, P Hennessy for Sheehan 60.
ÉIRE ÓG: C Kelly; D O'Herlihy, J Mullins, C McGoldrick; D McCarthy, J Cooper, D Sheehan; R O'Toole, L Sheehan; E O'Shea, J Murphy, C O'Callaghan; D Goulding (c), C Sheehan, B Hurley.
Subs: K Hallissey for Hurley half-time, J Kelleher for Dineen 50, J Cooper for O'Toole 52.
Referee: M Collins (Clonakilty)