Maghera run away with D’Alton final

April 18, 2019

St Patrick’s Maghera 7-17 St Patrick’s Cavan 0-5
From Kevin Kelly in Clogher
With two of the highest scoring teams in the competition making it through to the D’Alton Cup Final a close, high scoring game was expected at Clogher on Wednesday afternoon. Unfortunately for the neutral only one team brought their A game and with wind advantage in the first half St Patrick’s Maghera showed just why they went into this game as hot favourites.
To say that St Patrick’s Maghera hit the ground running would be an understatement as they had one hand on the silverware by half-time after establishing a 3-11 to 0-1 advantage.
Conor Downey landed the opening three points of the game in as many minutes before Toby McKiernan got Cavan’s only first half score. In the 4th minute wing half forward Finbar McShane burst through to blast to the net as a free flowing Maghera side clicked into gear.
Downey and Johnny McGuckin tagged on points before a free from the former picked out centre half forward Shea Birt and he made no mistake with his finish to the net in the 13th minute.
Holders Cavan already had a mountain to climb and Maghera were in no mood to take their foot off the gas. McShane split the posts before a third major duly arrived in the 20th minute following a strong run from full forward Ciaran Chambers.
Maghera were dominant in all sectors in the field and the points flowed before the interval with Tom Quinn, Downey (2) and McGuckin (2) all on target to leave them already well out of sight of their opponents.
Cavan needed to make a good start to the second half but Maghera coped superbly with everything the Breffni lads could muster while continuing to carry a serious scoring threat themselves.
Clan Keaney gave the Cavan lads hope when he opened the second half scoring but Maghera took the wind from their opponents’ sails with three goals in the third quarter from Ciaran Chambers (2) and Johnny Mc Guckin.
The South Derry lads continued to drive forward creating numerous opportunities that a hard pressed Cavan defence struggled to compete with. Conor Coyle scored his team’s seventh goal 15 minutes into the second half allowing the management to run the bench.
Cavan battled on but Maghera’s pace, quality and finishing power enabled them to add five further points through D Mc Peake, C Downey, T Quinn (2) and C Coyle. Cavan did create further scoring chances with three converted frees from the boot of Conall Mooney but they were well beaten by a very talented and hard working Maghera side.
St Patrick’s Maghera: C McCallion, R McErlean, D McDermott, B Butcher, T McCormack, F McEldowney, C Bradley, D McPeake (0-2), T Quinn (0-2), C Coyle (1-1), S Birt (1-0), F McShane (1-1), J McGuckin (1-3), C Chambers (3-1), C Downey (0-7 3F).
Subs: E Hassan for C Bradley, C Mc Closkey for S Birt, D McGonigle for F Mc Shane, A Donnelly for J Mc Guckin, C Moore for C Coyle
St Patrick’s Cavan: A Gaynor, K McGovern, E Crowe, J McManus, C Callaghan, C Carty, C Murphy, C Mooney (0-3) S Shiels, T McKiernan (0-1), H Boylan, E Ward, N Reilly, M Costello, C Keaney (0-1)
Subs: C Donoghue for C Murphy, C Sharpe for C Callaghan, R Fitzsimons for H Boylan, E O’Reilly for T Mc Kiernan,
Referee: M Loughran, Tyrone