Davitts Capture First Ever Football Title (1975 South Mayo Junior Championship)
Irishtown, the tiny South Mayo village which was the scene of many Land League meetings in the last century, had another chapter written into it’s history when the local Davitts team captured their first ever football title by defeating The Neale in the final of the South Mayo junior football championship at Hollymount on Sunday.
In dismissing the challenge of The Neale more easily than the scoreline would suggest, they stamped themselves as a team with a bright future. The crystal clear difference between the sides was the winners’ ability to make full use of defensive errors by the losers and this was clearly illustrated shortly after the resumption when the winners belted home their second goal.
Davitts’ midfielders Tommy Griffin and Frank Fahy took complete control after ten minutes and despite a variety of pairings which the losers drafted into the area, they were never able to curb the Davitts pair.
Centre-half forward Louis Prendergast was the real thorn in The Neale’s defence and along with his second half goal from 30 yards he also combined with breaking through for a number of other scores.
The Neale had the better of the early exchanges but despite exerting strong pressure on Davitts defence, they did not chalk up their first score – a point by Michael Keane – until the 9th minute.
After the winners settled down and drew level – 0-2 each – at the end of the first quarter, they could be considered lucky not to have been a goal behind soon afterwards when Larry O’Dea had a point blank shot miraculously saved by the winners’ goalkeeper, John Waldron.
But from then on Davitts held the reins and before the interval had a well taken goal by full forward M.J. McLoughlin when he collected a gift pass from Prendergast to plant the ball in the net.
One minute after the restart the winners hit another shattering blow when they increased their half-time lead of 1-3 to 0-3 with another goal by Prendergast.
Outstanding for the winners were J. Waldron (goal), B. McGrath, J. Kirrane, M. Connolly, F. Fahy, T. Griffin, L. Prendergast, M.J. McLoughlin, M. Griffin and F. McGrath.
Scorers for Davitts: M.J. McLoughlin (1-3), M. Griffin (0-5), L. Prendergast (1-0).
Davitts: J. Waldron; J. Kirrane; B. McGrath; J. McHugh; E. McLoughlin; F. McGrath; M. Connelly; F. Fahy; T. Griffin; M. Griffin; L. Prendergast; S. Connolly; J. Griffin; M.J. McLoughlin; J. Stephens. Sub: T. Tighe (for J. Griffin).