Maghera take Mageean Cup for 13th time

October 28, 2017

Danske Bank Mageean Cup final: An Dún 2-12 St Patrick’s, Maghera 1-19

From Kevin Herron for Irish News

St Patrick’s, Maghera were crowned Danske Bank Mageean Cup champions for the 13th time in their history thanks to a 1-19 to 2-12 win over An Dún under lights at the Dub last night.

An Dún were first off the mark as Tim Prenter fired over the bar on three minutes, but St Patrick’s levelled on seven minutes through Ruairi Rafferty and then took the lead through ace marksman Richie Mullan, who converted a free after Billy Campbell had caught Rafferty too high for referee Brendan Toland’s liking.

The opening goal arrived after nine minutes when Tiarnan McHugh’s high shot was fumbled by An Dún keeper Conor McLornan under the bright lights and despite the best attempts of full-back Eoin Kelly, McHugh’s shot found the net to make it 1-2 to 0-1 in favour of St Patrick’s.

McHugh added a point to his goal from the next puck-out before Ronan Costello replied for An Dún who appeared to playing second fiddle early on.

The sides traded scores through a Mullan free and a fine point from the hard-working Conor McCrickard, but the Maghera boys were the more clinical in front of the posts, and opened up a 1-8 to 0-3 lead after 22 minutes.

Three of St Patrick’s four unanswered scores came courtesy of Mullan, all from frees, with the pick of the lot his second effort from his own half just in front of the 65.

Tiarnan McHugh landed a further point from Liam McCann’s long pass.

An Dún were without a score in 12 minutes but on 23 minutes they found a lifeline when substitute Stuart Martin made an immediate impact and fired past Ciaran Hendry with his first touch after replacing Caolan Coulter, to make it 1-3 to 1-8.

Peadar McLaughlin spurned the chance to hit St Patrick’s second goal of the evening after Tiarnan McHugh’s lay-off and it was a chance Maghera would rue as Ryan Coulter stabbed home within 60 seconds at the other end after Ciaran Hendry had initially kept Ronan Costello at bay.

The sides traded scores as two points remained the difference at the midway point.

Paddy Quinn increased the St Patrick’s lead, only for Ronan Blair to respond for An Dún and just when Tim Prenter thought he had reduced the deficit to the bare minimum, Richie Mullan stroked over a 21-yard free to leave the scoreboard reading 1-10 to 2-5 at the interval.

An Dún were back on terms for the first time since the eighth minute thanks to an early Conor McCrickard free and a score from Ronan Costello, but three converted Richie Mullan frees gave St Patrick’s Maghera a 1-13 to 2-7 lead after 40 minutes.

McCrickard converted successive frees to reduce the arrears to a point midway through the second half, but Maghera substitute Fintan Bradley hit back-to-back scores of his own to restore his side’s three-point lead.

Conor McCrickard (free) and Ruairi Rafferty traded scores before a further two quick-fire McCrickard frees made it a one-point game with little under 10 minutes remaining.

If there was pressure on St Patrick’s it didn’t show in the final embers of the final as they hit the final three scores of the game through Peadar McLaughlin, Richie Mullan (free) and Paddy Quinn, whose shot cannoned off the crossbar and over.

An Dún almost levelled before Quinn’s insurance point as McCrickard laid the ball into the path of Ronan Costello who fizzed his golden opportunity wide of the post under pressure.

St Patrick’s, Maghera: C Hendry, R Mullholland, L McCann, O Magill, N McNicholl, T Walsh, F Ó Caiside, M Quinn, P Quinn 0-2, M McCormack, R Rafferty 0-2, P McLaughlin 0-1, P O’Kane, T McHugh 1-2, R Mullan 0-10 (9f).

Subs: F Bradley 0-2 for M McCormack (31 mins), D Bradley for R Mullholland (31 mins), C McGilligan for N McNicholl (58 mins), S McCloskey for L McCann (63 mins)

An Dún: C McLornan, M McAreavey, E Kelly, R Murphy, L McCarthy, C Coulter, B Campbell, P Savage, C Coulter, N McFarland, C McCrickard 0-7 (6f), R Costello 0-2, R Coulter 1-0, R Blair 0-1, T Prenter 0-2.

Subs: S Martin 1-0 for C Coulter (22 mins), C Watson for N McFarland (50 mins)

Referee: Brendan Toland (Lámh Dhearg)