While most of the county and province were watching FA Cup finals and Pro12 semi finals a small bunch of supporters took themselves to Parke to watch Round 4 of the Mayo Senior League Division 1C where they witnessed a tight action packed game.
Before the game began Swinford stallwart Terry Maughan had to empty the goalmouth of a swimming pool of rain. Well done Terry but I would have expected the home club to have the pitch playable.
Parke started the game well but could not take the points and opened with two wides. This was a feature of the game in all with sixteen wides. We found our footing and struck with well taken points by Kevin McDonagh and Enda Heaney. Parke got off the mark with a point from a dead ball before Mark Forkan never gave the ball up and scored a lovely point. Another free and a score from play had the teams level.
A long ball into the Parke goalmouth should have been easily dealt with by the goalkeeper but he misjudged the ball and Darren Campbell scored a simple goal. This was followed by a free from jack McDonnell and we were four ahead. Parke missed three on the go before scoing with a free and another point to leave it a two point game.
We then showed that we could miss as well with three wides before Kevin McDonagh scored to leave us on 1-5. Before the break Parke got one back between another few wides.
Playing with the wind we were two up at the break, thanked to bad shooting by the home team and a fortuitous goal.
The second half nearly started off brillantly when Darren Campbell cut in from the left and with let off a beautiful shot destined for the top corner but for the goalkeeper to finger tip it off the crossbar.
Parke soon had it a one point game before Jack McDonnell cracked the crossbar and the follow up shot from Eoin Gallagher to go right across the small area.
There was a lengthy stoppage due to an injury to a Parke player and this time was to be crucial in the end.
We could easily have been out of sight but the game was evenly balanced. Darren Campbell won a free and Jack McDonnell may easy work of it but from there Parke took control and scored the next four points to put them ahead 0-11 to 1-6.
The game was petering out and into injury time when firstly John Carney scored a lovely point and then his brother Jason came up and got a better one. The game was level and well into four minutes of added time.
Unfortunately that was not the end and Parke cracked over two late points to win by 0-13 to 1-8.
It was a much better performance then last week but a lot of the same failings still showed. A lot of encouragment to be taken from the game and the management should be able to work on the team work in the coming weeks to iron out the problems. A long season still ahead of us and all in our own hands.
Players and managment give up all their free time for the Swinford jersey and they derserve all the credit for that. It is now time for the town to get behind them. GAA is not just about the Mayo team and the pursuit of Sam Maguire it is based on the parish, the club, our own people. I hope to see a lot more supporters at our next few games…home and away.
Swinford: Damien Geraghty, Kevin Barry, Joe Kelly, Alan McLoughlin, Jason Carney, Sean Brady, James Lavin, Mark Forkan, Fergal Harte, John Carney, Liam Moran, Kevin McDonagh, Jack McDonnell, Enda Heaney, Darren Campbell. Subs Eoin Gallagher, Paul McNicholas, Kevin Doyle, Darragh McIntyre.
Scorers: Darren Campbell 1-0, Jack McDonnell, Kevin McDonagh 0-2, Enda Heaney, Mark Forkan, John Carney, Jason Carney 0-1
All views expressed above are those personal to the writer.