ROSCOMMON HELD OFF a late rally from Mayo to clinch the Connacht Minor Football Final by a scoreline of 0-10 to 0-8 at Dr Hyde Park.
Roscommon got off to a superb start and dominated the opening 10 minutes. Enda Smith kicked four unanswered points and Mayo were shell-shocked.
It took a successful free from captain Adam Gallagher to get Mayo on the scoreboard for the first time.
Gallagher added a second point from the placed ball and Kevin Lynch soared a long-range effort over the bar to reduce the deficit further but Roscommon struck back again.
Conditions were slick on-pitch with cross winds making points difficult. Even so, Mayo were profligate with scoring changes and had five wides in the first half.
The Rossies led by 0-6 to 0-3 at the break but Gallagher pulled his side back into the contest in the early stages of the second-half.
The Mayo Gaels player scored a free just two minutes in and then added an excellent point from an acute angle as the contest drew close.
Diarmuid Murtagh rallied his side with a fine point after he broke through the doughty Mayo defence and got a sight of goal. It was his team’s first score in 17 minutes but another Gallagher free, less than 60 seconds later, reduced the arrears again.
Murtagh was not giving up the fight as he disposed Michael Plunkett on 43 minutes and curled over an effort from 38 metres out after striking the ball with the outside of his left boot.
Mayo, with none of their six forwards on the scoresheet, pressed but could not find another score and Murtagh made it a three point deficit with five minutes to go.
James Quinn, on as a Mayo substitute, made it a close contest in the final minutes with a point but Enda Smith crucially won possession in midfield, gained a free and found Murtagh to seal the contest.
Mayo: Conor O’Malley; David McHale, Sean Moran, Kevin Lynch; Patrick Durcan, Cian Burke, Michael Plunkett; Brian Mullen, Adam Gallagher; Eoghan Lavin, Stephen Coen, Diarmuid O’Connor; Darren Duff, Shane Hennelly, Sean Regan.
Roscommon: Shane Mannion; Philip Neilan, Dennis Barron, Cathal Kenny; Tadhg McKenna, Conor Hussey, Ronan Daly; Ultan Harney, Thomas Corcoran; Cathal Compton, Ruardhri McManus, Enda Smith; Diarmuid Murtagh, Kevin Finn, Michael Gunning.