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Dr McKenna Cup: Semi-final wins for Monaghan and Tyrone

Malachy O’Rourke and Mickey Harte guided their sides to victories in last four clashes yesterday.

 Tyrone's Plunkett Kane celebrates his goal.
Tyrone's Plunkett Kane celebrates his goal.
Image: INPHO/Presseye/Russell Pritchard

Monaghan 1-12
Down 0-13

Monaghan kicked the last three points of the game to overhaul Down in yesterday’s semi-final at the Athletic Grounds.

In a tightly-contested game where the teams were level on eight occasions, Monaghan’s late scoring burst proved crucial.

Ace marksman Conor McManus, who finished up with 1-7 to his credit, tied the teams in the 69th minute at 1-10 to 0-13.

And then Monaghan’s inspirational defender Darren Hughes came forward to land two brilliant long-range points from play that sealed Monaghan’s progression to next weekend’s Dr McKenna Cup final.

The loss marked the end of Down’s involvement in the pre-season fare after a game where Mark Poland, Donal O’Hare and Connaire Harrison had caught the eye for them in the scoring stakes.

The teams were level at the break, 1-5 to 0-8, with McManus firing the ball to the roof of the net towards the end of the first-half. He continued to lead the way in the second-half as Malachy O’Rourke’s side claimed victory.

Scorers
Monaghan:
Conor McManus 1-7 (0-4f, 0-1 sideline), Darren Hughes 0-2, Owen Duffy, Dick Clerkin, Paul Finlay (0-1f) 0-1 each.
Down: Mark Poland 0-4, Donal O’Hare 0-3 (0-3f), Connaire Harrison 0-2, Keith Quinn, Arthur McConville, Danny Savage, Ryan Mallon 0-1 each.

Action in yesterday’s Monaghan and Down clash. Pic: INPHO/Presseye/Russell Pritchard

Tyrone 2-9
Fermanagh 0-7

Reigning champions Tyrone are back in the Dr McKenna Cup final after their eight-point success against Fermanagh in the Athletic Grounds yesterday.

Tyrone made the early running to go into a 0-5 to 0-3 lead approaching the break with Sean Cavanagh to the fore for them while Daryl Keenan pointed the way for Fermanagh. But a goal from Plunkett Kane when he fired low to the net on the stroke of half-time ensured Tyrone enjoyed a five-point lead at the interval.

In the second-half Tyrone maintained their dominance and despite the setback of seeing Conor Gormley forced to withdraw through injury, they were ahead by 1-8 to 0-4 after 55 minutes.

Fermanagh briefly trimmed the deficit to five points yet Tyrone then pulled clear with an injury-time goal from Carrickmore’s Mark Donnelly capping off their victory by notching their second goal of the game.

Scorers
Tyrone:
Sean Cavanagh 0-4 (0-2f), Mark Donnelly, Plunkett Kane 1-0 each, Martin Penrose, Kevin Gallagher, Conor McAliskey, Peter Harte, Stephen O’Neill (0-1f) 0-1 each.
Fermanagh: Daryl Keenan 0-5 (0-4f), Peter Ward (0-1f), Seamus Quigley 0-1 each.

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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