Abbey VS survive Markey thriller

January 17, 2019

Danske Bank Markey Cup quarter-final:
Abbey Vocational Donegal 0-11 Loreto Coleraine 1-7
THIS really tightly-fought Danske Bank Markey Cup quarter-final in Strabane looked to be heading for extra time with the teams locked at 0-10 to 1-7 and a couple of minutes of injury-time already played.
Then Loreto earned a free on the right side-line. But Dara Mooney’s effort dropped short and Abbey broke quickly out of defence. The ball was worked to Michael Statham around 35 or 40 metres from the Coleraine goals and the Donegal county under 20 panellist did well to make room for a shot and fire over the winning point.
Coleraine had another free from the 45m line to level, but Leo Passmore’s effort fell just outside the post and Abbey were into a semi-final against either St Ciaran’s Ballygawley or St Louis Kilkeel who play next Tuesday
This was a real nip and tuck game and only once during the 60+ minutes did a gap of two points open up. That happened midway through the second half when points from Jamie Crawford, Shea Travers, Cian Heggarty (free) and Richard O’Rourke doubled Abbey’s half time score to eight points as against six from Loreto.
But Loreto soon responded with Ruairí Maguire rounding two players and blasting left-footed to the roof of the net. Points from a Heggarty free and from Jamie Crawford edged Abbey ahead once more, but Ben Dillon tied the teams yet again as the game slipped into added time.
It was a similar story during the first half with the teams turning over on 0-4 each at the break. Lorcan McMullan was a real threat to the Donegal town side during that period, well supported by Odhrán McLarnon and Sean Irwin, while Ruairí Maguire sprang to life during the second half.
Abbey had big games from match winner Statham, full-back Barry Fagan, free-taker Cian Heagarty and Jamie Crawford who started at corner-forward but played most of the game at midfield. After this performance Abbey look like the team to beat at this level.
Abbey : E O’Hagan, E Corley, B Fagan, K Falkner, A McHugh, R O’Rourke (0-1), E Gorrell, R Brogan, J Crawford (0-4, 0-1 free), S Kennedy, M Statham (0-1), C Feeney, M Coughlan, C Heggarty (0-3 frees), S Travers (0-2).
Subs : A McCalmont for C Feeney, O Quinn for M Statham, T White for R Brogan, B Gallagher for M Coughlan
Loreto : L Passmore, S Irwin, J Meehan, E McKeever, D Burns, C McKelvey, C Moore, D Close, C McGee, O McLarnon, D Mooney (0-3, 0-2 frees), F McEwan, B Dillon (0-2), L McMullen (0-1), R Maguire (1-1).
Subs : E Morrison for F McEwan, C Dempsey for D Close, C Papachristopolous for E Morrison, M Catterson for D Burns
Referee : M Connolly (Aghyaran)