Dean Maguirc hold off Cootehill in McAvoy final

May 03, 2019

Danske Bank McAvoy Cup Final

Dean Maguirc Carrickmore 3-7 St Aidan’s Cootehill 2-7
From Kevin Kelly in Armagh
Dean Maguirc Carrickmore collected their second Danske Bank Ulster schools’ title of the season when they withstood a late St Aidan’s Cootehill rally at Pearse Og Park to take the McAvoy Cup.
After the sides were level at the end of a low scoring opening half the winners took control to move nine points clear at the three quarter mark. They looked set to ease to victory but credit to the Cavan lads who refused to throw in the towel as they fought back gallantly as Dean Maguirc were forced to endure a nervous finish before taking the silverware.
St Aidan’s midfielder Mark Cassidy opened the scoring in the 4th minute when he first timed the ball to the net only for Dean Maguirc to come straight down the field for man of the match Michael Rafferty to raise a green flag with a thumping finish.
Darragh Lynch edged the Cavan school in front with a point but that was quickly cancelled out as well with a score from his opposite number David Morris. Respective captains Dean Carroll and Lorcan McGarrity traded points from frees before the former registered again for the last time that St.Aidan’s would lead.
Good play from McGarrity set up Rafferty for the equaliser as the half ended with the sides locked together at 1-3 apiece, Dean Maguirc hitting six wides to their opponents’ three.
McGarrity opened the second half scoring from a free but again St Aidan’s replied as Senan Mullen split the posts. A blistering 12 minute spell though sent Dean Maguirc on their way to victory as they scored 2-3 without reply to take a stranglehold on proceedings.
Rafferty and Joe Warnock tagged on points before Morris burst through to claim his second of the contest as the winners upped the tempo. In the 42nd minute the Dean grabbed their second goal when a scrabble in the St Aidan’s area saw Kieran Mulholland’s first time shot being diverted past keeper Adrian McDonald by Colum McCrory.
Five minutes later and St Aidan’s had a mountain to climb when a powerful run by Rafferty saw him go past four challenges before off-loading to substitute Ryan Coyle whose shot from an acute angle took a deflection on its way to the net.
That proved to be the Tyrone school’s last score of the contest and they had to soak up late pressure in the final dozen minutes plus injury time before claiming victory.
Carroll knocked over two frees either side of a point from play from Cillian Boyle before a flowing move ended with substitute James Shanley palming to the net a minute into injury time. Only a score separated the sides but Dean Maguirc held on for another three minutes to deservedly take the title.
Dean Maguirc Carrickmore: G McAleer, A Morris, C Kelly, C Gillan, O McGurk, R Dobbs, R Fox, D Sweeney, L McGarrity (0-2, 2F), J Warnock (0-1), O Rafferty, C McCrory (1-0), D Morris (0-2), K Mulholland, M Rafferty (1-2).
Subs: R Coyle (1-0) for O Rafferty, P Byrne for Warnock, J Warnock for McGurk
St Aidan’s Cootehill: A McDonald, C Maguire, C Fitzsimons, D Adams, D Boyle, O Leddy, C O’Reilly, M Cassidy (1-0), C Hennessey, C Boyle (0-1), D Carroll (0-4, 4F), S Mullen (0-1), D Lynch (0-1), C Cooper, C Bannon.
Subs: E Argue for Cooper, C Cooper for Lynch, B McGahan for Adams, J Shanley (1-0) for Boyle, N McCaul for O’Reilly
Referee: P Boylan, Armagh