DONEGAL BOOKED THEIR PLACE in the final of the Uister Minor Hurling Shield last night after an emphatic win over Monaghan at Sean MacCumhaill Park.
Donegal 4-14 Monaghan 0-06
Lorcan O’Toole’s men were in no mood to mess around as they clinched a spot in the final, where they will take on neighbours Tyrone.
Donegal led from start to finish with Caolan McDermott netting a goal in the third minute and it was one-way traffic thereafter.
McDermott ended the night with 2-3 to his name while Cathal Doherty helped himself to 1-8 to leave as the game’s top marksman.
Cian Randels also got in on the act with a goal in the first half.
Doherty, the captain, put Donegal in front with a 20-metre free before McDermott struck the opening goal. A shot from distance was misjudged by Monaghan goalkeeper Dylan Curtis and crept into the net.
A pair of Luke McKenna frees steadied Monaghan, but the respite was only momentary as Donegal bagged goal number two in the eighth minute, Doherty’s free from 40 metres going straight to the net.
He mightn’t have got the best of connections to the ball, but Randels unsighted Curtis and the ball flew all the way to the back of the net.
Doherty, McDermott and Macauley Carr drilled over points and it took two fine saves by Curtis to keep Donegal at bay.
However, Donegal broke for another goal when Randels collected a long ball in and sent a low shot beyond Curtis.
McDermott and Stephen Gallagher tagged on points to put Donegal 3-7 to 0-3 ahead at half-time.
Two minutes into the second-half, Donegal crushed Monaghan when a looping McDermott shot flew over Curtis for the home side’s fourth goal.
Doherty hit five second-half points while Randels scored a point with his boot in the 43rd minute as Donegal cruised to a comfortable victory.
“We want to get out of this Division – we don’t want to be in B Divisions,” said O’Toole.
“This could have been a banana skin, but they settled well and took it in their stride. We were in third gear a little bit in the first half, but we kept the scores ticking in the second half.
“Monaghan had some very nice skilful hurlers out there and they could have got right back into it. There is room for improvement before we play Tyrone now in the final on Friday night.”
Donegal: Kieran Bradley; Brian Diver, Brian McHenry, Christopher Gallagher; Cathair Doherty, Ryan Hilferty, Fiachra McLaughlin; Kevin Keeley, Stephen Anderson; Caolan McDermott (2-8), Cathal Doherty (1-8, 1-4f), Jamie de Ward; Macauley Carr (0-1), Cian Randels (1-1), Stephen Gallagher (0-1). Subs: Conall Sweeney for de Ward (23), Sean Halvey for Gallagher (half-time), Chris Rua Gallagher for McHenry (42), James Monaghan for McLaughlin (46).
Monaghan: Dylan Curtis; Lee Butler, Dylan McAree, Ronan Finnegan; Anthony Greenan, Cathal Power, James Carville; Niall McManus (0-2), Luke McKenna (0-3, 3f); Mark Murphy, Stephen Walters, Alan Duffy; Aidan Burns, Omar Duffy, Nathan O’Donoghue (0-1). Subs: Matthew Donnelly for Duffy (37), Nathan Farrell for Greenan (37), Peter Clinton for O’Donoghue (45), Luke Mulligan for Burns (55).
Referee: Barry Winters (Tyrone).Tags: