Danske Bank Ulster Schools MacLarnon Cup Semi-Final
Cathair Dhoire 1-10 Inis Eoghain 1-7
From Odhrán Crumley in Celtic Park
Cathair Dhoire have set-up a MacLarnon Cup final meeting with Red High on March 18th after the Derry amalgamation saw of a valiant Inis Eoghain fight.
The Donegal side led by the minimum at the break courtesy of Christopher McDaid’s poacher instincts to punch the ball into the net.
Josh Conlon opened the scoring from a free inside the first minute of the game before Ryan Brown restored parity shooting after a fine swivel.
Eoghan Cassidy and Fergal Mortimer added scores against the wind for their side before Conlon nailed a free in response.
There was seventeen minutes on the clock when Matthew Stephenson spilled Jonathan Toye’s pointed effort into the path of Christopher McDaid who made no mistake in punching the ball into the net.
Conlon landed yet another free before Cassidy pointed to stop the rot for the Oakleaf men who failed to register a score for seventeen minutes.
Ben McCarron added his first score of the game on the whistle, but it was the Donegal side which led by the minimum on a scoreline of 1-3 to 0-5.
Despite being behind at the break the Derry men would not have been too down heartened given the fact that they would have a strong wind advantage for the second stanza.
Conlon and Mortimer landed frees inside the opening minutes of the half before Cathair Dhoire kicked five wides in a row which amounted to a total of thirteen over the course of the hour.
With fifteen left to play it was Derry underage star, Ben McCarron who cut through the heart of the Inis Eoghain defence before being illegally upended by Conor O’Donnell.
Referee, Sean Laverty duly awarded a penalty and McCarron stepped up to fire the ball into the bottom right corner of the net to give his side a two point lead.
Further Dhoire wides would follow before points from Rory Hirrell and a superb equaliser from Matthew Mullholland levelled proceedings with four left on the clock.
It was at this juncture that both sides needed leaders and it was the men in red that took control, Mortimer landing a colossal free from 40 yards to edge his side back in front.
Ben McCarron added another score with the outside of his right boot before substitute Tiernan O’Kane landed a monstrous effort from the narrowest of angles to put two between them with time up.
Inis Eoghain would need a goal and they almost had that as a high ball was directed into the area and met by the hand of Donal Doherty who flicked the ball goalward cannoning off the crossbar before falling over bar.
Jude Og Moore put the icing on the cake, sealing a final spot for his time splitting the posts with the last action of the game to confirm a three point win.
Cathair Dhoire: M Stephenson, P O’Flaherty, N O’Mianian, M Lynch, J Mullan, S McElhinney, C McLaughlin, C Mooney, O McGrath, S Browne, B McCarron (1-2 1f 1pen), F Mortimer (0-3 3f), R Brown (0-1), E Cassidy (0-2), C McMonagle.
Subs: J Og Moore (0-1) for C McMonagle (42), T O’Kane (0-1) for J Mullan (54), O McMenamin for R Brown (56)
Inis Eoghain: D McCallion, E McCallion, A Doherty, O Kelly, D Doherty (0-1), O Devlin, C McNutt, G McDaid, C O’Donnell, J Conlon (0-4 4f), C McDaid (1-0), C Carlin, B Doherty, J Toye, R Hirrell (0-1).
Subs: M Mullholland (0-1) for O Kelly (26), L Doherty for C Carlin (HT)
Referee: S Laverty (Antrim)