DONEGAL GOT THEIR North-West Under-21 Cup campaign off to a winning start with a four-point win over Sligo at Mundy’s Field in Ballyshannon this afternoon.
Donegal 2-7 Sligo 0-9
Goals in either half from Aidan Sweeney and Conor Doherty gave Declan Bonner’s side a winning start to 2016 in a game that was switched to Ballyshannon because of an unplayable pitch at the Sligo Centre of Excellence.
Donegal began brightly with a goal after just 10 minutes when Sweeney and Leo McHugh swept forward with an exchange of passes and Sweney buried to the back of the Sligo net from 12 yards.
Cian Mulligan and Darragh Kilcoyne had swapped points early on and Donegal extended their lead when Michael Miller popped over after Eoin McDonagh denied Mulligan with a fine save.
Niall Friel opened up a five-point lead for Donegal, but Sligo hit back with three-in-a-row from Kilcoyne (free), Jimmy Gillen and Kevin Henry.
In between times, Donegal were denied another goal when McDonagh thwarted Adam Neely with a brilliant save and but for the Sligo goalkeeper, the margin could have been greater.
Neely clipped over a free to put Donegal 1-4 to 0-4 ahead at the break and he kicked Donegal’s first score of part two after good approach work from Miller and Doherty.
Ten minutes into the second half, Doherty netted a cracking second goal for Donegal when he burst past two defenders on the endline and smashed to the roof of the Sligo net.
Henry and Kilcoyne (2) reduced the arreas again, but with Doherty (free) on the mark again and with Michael Langan polishing off a fine four-man move it was Donegal’s day.
Donegal play Fermanagh next Saturday in Ballyshannon and will meet Mayo in Ballybofey a week later.
Donegal: Paddy Byrne (Naomh Columba); Jack Scally (Dungloe), Bruce Waldron (Buncrana), Danny Monagle (Carndonagh); Cian Mulligan (Gaoth Dobhair, 0-1), Conor O’Donnell (St Eunan’s), Niall Friel (Gaoth Dobhair, 0-1); Leo McHugh (Four Masters), Michael Langan (St Michael’s, 0-1); Christian Bonner (Na Rossa), Mark Coyle (Burt), Aiden Sweeney (Termon, 1-0); Adam Neely (Dungloe, 0-1), John Campbell (Buncrana), Michael Miller (St Eunan’s, 0-1). Subs used: Conor Doherty (Kilcar, 1-1, 1f), Niall Harley (Aodh Ruadh), Stephen McMenamin (Red Hughs), Colm Kelly (Aodh Ruadh), Andrew McClean (Kilcar), Callum Gallagher (Naomh Bríd), Daniel Gallagher (Naomh Ultan), Darren Curran (Dungloe), Jack Quinn (Naomh Padraig, Lifford), John McDyre (Na Rossa), Hugh ‘Yank’ Boyle (Naomh Muire).
Sligo: Eoin McDonagh; Jude McGarry, Conor Heraghty, Stephen Keenan; Oisin Kennedy, Stephen Connolly, Michael Clarke, Kevin Henry (0-2), Darragh Cunnings, Stephen Henry, Michael Casey (0-1, 1f), Jimmy Gillen (0-1), Jason Perry, Darragh Kilcoyne (0-4, 4f), Kyle Cawley. Subs used: Peter Murray, Paul Kilcoyne, Cathal Henry, Kenny Gavaghan, Dillon Kilgallon, Kyle Carthy, Cian Kilmartin, Nathan Mullen, Finnian Cawley (0-1, 1f)
Referee: Joe Corcoran (Fermanagh).Tags: