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Minor Championship Wrap Up
The opening round of the minor championship took place on Wednesday evening with some great action across the board in all grades. Holders Ardboe are into the next round after a comfortable 5-10 to 1-8 win over Donaghmore. Barry Devlin 1-3, Michael Lynn 1-3, David Mulgrew 1-2, Caolan Mallaghan 1-0, Kevin Coney 1-0 and Michael O’Neill 0-2 were the Rossas scorers with Conor Quinn, Coney, Oisin Devlin, Lynn, O’Neill, Mulgrew and Barry Devlin all playing well for them.
Coalisland played host to neighbours Stewartstown at Father Campbell Park in one of the ties of the round and they turned on the style to win 1-11 to 0-5. Caothair Quinn top scored for the Fianna with 1-2 to his name, Cormac O’Hagan and Gerard Woods notched three points each with Paul Herron, Sean Corr and Darragh McCann all on target as well. Paul Herron and Conal Lyons stood out in the winners defence with Gerard Woods and Caothair Quinn the pick of their forwards.
Moy had a comfortable win over Brackaville with Declan Conroy [3-2], Niall McConville [0-9], Ryan Coleman [0-5], Chris O’Neill [0-1], Mark McConville [0-1] and Sean Hanna [1-0] their winners scorers on a night when Eoin Fearon, Joe McMahon, Michael Morgan and Patrick Mackle played well too. Edendork upset the formbook with a 3-11 to 2-12 win over Eglish with Mark Donnelly, Joe McVeigh and Conor McKenna among the scorers for the St.Patricks. Trillick edged past Cookstown 1-11 to 2-6 with Daire Gallagher hitting 1-2, Lee Brennan getting five points and Ryan Gray, Conor Smith, Stephen O’Donnell and Ryan Goodwin all weighing in with a point each.
Newtownstewart defeated Kileeshil 4-7 to 0-13 with Shane Ashenhurst 2-1, Tiernan McNamee 1-2, Patrick Hargan 1-1, Naomhan McNamee 0-2 and Aidan McSorley 0-1 their scorers on the night. Fintona were worthy winners at home to Galbally, 4-13 to 1-11 the final score line. Sonny McDonagh, Mark McGlinn, Conor McGoldrick, Tommy McGrath and Marious Monaghan all hit points for the winners with McGrath, McGoldrick and Cathal Starrs all finding the net as well. Enda McGarrirty, Christopher Morris, Conor Donnelly and Ryan Hagan had points for Galbally with Patrick Quinn grabbing a consolation goal near the end of the game.
Tattyreagh beat Glenelly 3-11 to 2-7. The winners played against a strong breeze in the opening period and they trailed by six points at the break but they managed to turn things around. Tejay Richards 1-2, Johnny Harkin 1-1, Keelan McDonagh 0-3, Eoghan Murray 0-3, Joe Cartin 1-0, James Darcy 0-1 and Cormac McLaughlin 0-1 were their scorers on a night when they had good displays from Cartin, Darcy, Harkin and Murray. Moortown won the Loughshore derby against Derrylaughan on a 1-20 to 3-11 score line with Conan McLernon and Shane McKeown notching seven points each for the St.Malachys with Eoin Kelly and Ronan McGuigan playing well in defence and Jamie McCullagh playing well in attack too.
Greencastle defeated Dromore 5-10 to 6-6 with Peter Teague, Declan McNulty and Aidan McGrath getting the goals for the St.Dympnas with Teague, Declan McCusker and Joe McCusker among the points with Teague, Darren McCusker and Pearse Muldoon among their best players. Owen Roes played host to Errigal Ciaran and after a cracking encounter the home side came up just short against the reigning minor league champions on a 3-10 to 2-14 score line. Mark Kavanagh scored both goals for the winners with Eoin McNeilis and Patrick O’Neill among their points. Charles O’Doherty bagged two goals for the home side with Cathal McShane , Michael Dooher [1-1], Ryan McAleer , Kevin Cairns , Jack Boggs  and Conal McCormack  their other scorers.
Beragh got the better of a determined Castlederg side in a high scoring clash but it took extra time to separate these sides at the finish. The Red Knights led 1-10 to 2-2 at the break but in an exciting second half comeback the match ended Castlederg 3-11 Beragh 2-14. The winners finally prevailed in a very entertaining and high scoring affair on a score line of 5-15 to 4-12. Nathan Grimes 1-4, Conor Mc Namee 2-1, Mattie Mc Sorley 1-4, And Johnny Woods 0-2 accounted for most of Beragh’s scores while Tony Mc Glinchey converted two penalties for the Derg and Costa Savanas hit eight points.
A sun kissed evening, Championship football, 29 scores, and two game teams was what was on offer in this Minor Championship First round tie in Pairc an Ghleanna this evening as Errigal Ciaran and Owen Roes went toe to toe in front of a healthy crowd. It was Errigal who took their place in the last eight, but the home side found themselves very unfortunate not to at least produce extra time in a game that ebbed and flowed throughout.
The contest exploded into life from throw in and never dulled until Eamon McHugh blew the full time whistle over a hour later. Ryan McAleer won possession from the throw in, and within 15 seconds Charles O’Doherty was placing the ball into the corner of the Errigal goal.
However Errigal were not behind for long. Mark Kavanagh pointed from play, and with 2 minutes of the game played, a second green flag was raised as Kavanagh grabbed a goal of his own.
Cathal McShane levelled for Owen Roes but scores from Kavanagh, Daniel Blake, Padraig McGirr, and Patrick O’Neill in an Errigal purple patch saw them grab control. Kavanagh added another to his tally before Owen Roes almost notched their second goal as Ronan McNulty ran in from the end line and rattled the angle of post and crossbar.
Errigal were proving very efficient in front of the sticks and O’Neill and Eoin McNelis ensured that they kept Owen Roes at arms length. Indeed it looked like Errigal were going to romp home when Kavanagh bagged his second goal on 18 minutes to leave his side 2-8 to 1-1 ahead.
However this is an Owen Roes side that is made of sterner stuff and they slowly edged their way back into contention. A lovely flowing move allowed Jack Boggs to point, with Michael Dooher and a McShane placed kick adding to their tally.
A well taken Kevin Cairns score was added to quickly by another free score from McShane as they half ended 1-6 to 2-8 in favour of Errigal.
It was the men from Dunmoyle that came out of the blocks faster in the second thirty minutes and Blake popped over in the opening minutes. Nonetheless the Leckpatrick outfit were still keeping their heads above water, and McShane’s free was added to by a very good score from Ryan McAleer.
McGirr replied for Errigal, but Owen Roes were about to grab their second goal to really stir up the flames as O’Doherty bounced through the tackles to get his shot away and into the net. McAleer was in range again from the kick out as Owen Roes took the game to Errigal.
Nonetheless, Errigal were stirred, and Kavanagh was in range with a score, that Conall McCormick quickly cancelled out. A short worked free was chalked up by that man Kavanagh again before Padraig O’Neill’s free put three between the sides once more.
Where Errigal once led by ten points, with four minutes to go Owen Roes’ levelled the scores up. The hard working Marty O’Neill played a sumptuous ball into Michael Dooher who rounded the keeper to find the net.
With nerves frayed both sides squandered chances to take the tie before O’Neill’s late free gave Errigal the advantage. Once again Owen Roes fought back, but dogged Errigal defending forced them into hurried shots, and despite a couple of chances they could not find that final leveller, and it was Errigal who celebrated the final whistle.
Both sides should be commended on an entertaining hours football that was undecided until the final whistle, and played in a sporting manner. The home side certainly did enough to merit at least a stab at extra time, however Errigal Ciaran’s efficiency in shooting positions saw them home.
Jack McGeehan, Conor Donaghey, Sean Dooher, Oliver Gallagher, Michael Dooher (1-1), Stephen Harper, Aaron Boggs, Charles O’Doherty (2-0), Ryan McAleer (0-2), Marty O’Neill, Kevin Cairns (0-1), Jack Boggs (0-1), Cathal McShane (0-4), Conall McCormick (0-1), Ronan McNulty.