Roscommon had to go to extra-time to beat Offaly in today's final Bank of Ireland All-Ireland third round football qualifier in Mullingar on a score of 1-20 to 1-15.
Roscommon opened the scoring through Seamus O'Neill but Offaly soon equalised through Colm Quinn. It would be almost ten minutes before either side scored again but Offaly began to stretch their lead through Quinn and John Reynolds. Roscommon got scores through Jonathan Dunning and Frankie Dolan.
Seamus O'Neill was working hard in midfield for Roscommon, but they were finding it hard to convert their possession into scores as Offaly were always well ahead. Neville Coughlan, Colm Quinn and Paudie Mulhare scored for Offaly, but they were not taking their opportunities to put Tommy Carr's men away. They would come to rue this in the last couple of minutes of the first half when, three points ahead, they conceded a penalty when the hard-working Seamus O'Neill was brought down and the penalty, although initially saved, was converted by Gerry Lohan. Half time score was 1-05 to 0-08.
Colm Quinn opened the scoring in the second half for Offaly, but it would be their last score for some time as Roscommon went on a scoring spree with Frankie Dolan getting three in a row followed by scores from Derek Connellan and Lohan. Offaly were in trouble and could reply with only one point, which was quickly cancelled out by yet another Frankie Dolan score and then a point from Derek Connellan on 26 minutes. Offaly then began to get a handle on the game with a goal and a point from veteran Finbar Cullen to level it well into injury time. With seconds to go Offaly were given a free and Ciaran McManus stepped up and from a difficult angle missed to see the game go to extra-time.
Roscommon immediately went ahead in the first period of extra-time with another scoring spree again headed by Frankie Dolan with five points without reply. This would prove a bridge too far for Offaly who, although they tried gamely, could not stay in contact with Roscommon. Frankie Dolan finished the game as a tie with two more scores in the second period, his 11th and 12th scores of the day, to leave the final score 1-20 to 1-15.
Filed by Barry J Whyte