The Donegal League’s title chasers won again yesterday and the race for glory seems as if it will go on into the season’s dying days – here’s a full round-up of yesterday’s action.
Brian Mc Cormick Sports Premier Division
Castlefin Celtic 8 Kilmacrennan Celtic 1
Castlefin secured a massive home win over Kilmacrennan on Sunday in Park View.
The home side took the lead when an Emmett White cross fell to the feet of Damien McAnenny who smashed home after 25 minutes.
The visitors then should have equalised through Caolan McDaid but his shot flew wide of the post.
In the 35th minute the hosts doubled their lead when a cross from the left was deflected into the net by JP Malley.
In the 38th minute the hosts increased their lead when the ball fell to McAnenny who’s shot flew in from 20 yards.
Shane Gallagher added to the hosts tally when he latched onto a through ball and finished well just before the break.
In the 55th minute Ronan Tourish burst clear and his cross was met by Malley to make it five and Tourish and Malley combined again and Malley made no mistake from close range.
Kilmacrennan responded and pulled a goal back through Gary Gorman after persistent play. Tourish then got a goal of his own when he lobbed the keeper from 40 yards with 75 minutes on the clock.
Tourish then added his second late on when he poked home from close range after a cross from the left.
Best for Castlefin: JP Malley and Damien Mc Anenny. Best for Kilmacrennan: Gary Gorman.
Referee: Patrick Martin
Milford United 3 Drumoghill F.C. 2
Milford earned a hard-fought win against a battling Drumoghill team in beautiful sunshine at Moyle View Park. Milford played some excellent football in the first half but squandered several gilt edge chances to take the lead and Drumoghill punished them on the break through Liam O’Donnell.
Milford equalised before half time when Mark flood fired home from the penalty spot.
Milford took the lead on 60 minutes when Terence Shields made a great run through the Drumoghill back line but his chipped shot hit the bar however Cathal McGettigan was on hand to fire home.
Two minutes later and Drumoghill were level again when Liam O’Donnell scored a cracker from 25 yards. Milford scored the winner on 80 minutes when Gary Merritt fired home after good work from substitute Darragh Greene.
Donegal Town 2 Glenea United 3
Glenea left the Hospital Field with all three points after a closely fought encounter. The visitors took the lead early on when a cross from out wide was parried for by the keeper with Lee O’Brien quick off the mark to poke it home.
The visitors doubled their lead on the half hour mark when Sean McBride tapped in from close range from a low cross.
Donegal got back into it just before the break when Joe McIntyre finished well when he latched onto an excellent through ball from Barry Mulligan. Donegal started the better outfit in the second half with Joe McIntyre in particular causing a lot of problems.
Glenea increased their lead on the hour mark when they scored on the counter attack, a quick break finished well by Michael McHugh. Donegal threw everything at Glenea in the final half hour but they defended extremely well and despite a lot of Donegal possession they were restricted to long range efforts.
Donegal then made it an exciting finish when Brighton Tranz crossed for substitute James Kerrigan to fire home.
The visitors held out in the end for the victory in a hard-fought game with both sides producing good team performances. Referee: Liam McLoughlin
Rathmullan Celtic 0 Cappry Rovers 2
A two-goal blitz within seven minutes in the first half was enough for title chasing Cappry Rovers (pictured) to claim all three points from a huge game for both sides at opposite ends of the Donegal Premier League Table in a sun-soaked clash at the Seaside.
In what was an early kick off at 11am both teams observed a minute’s silence for Whitestrand United stalwart and Rathmullan legend Pat Deeney who was laid to his rest at 1pm.
In what was a nip/tuck affair at the Flagpole in the opening exchanges, both sides were cautious as a much-needed win for the title chasers Cappry was mirrored by the Hoops critical relegation battle.
Cappry took the initiative after 20 minutes when sharp-shooter ‘Chucky’ Gethins sneaked in behind the Hoops’ defence to avail of a crafty through ball from Paddy McLaughlin in midfield.
Gethins very calmly chipped the advancing Hoops’ keeper Sean Gallagher to score an exquisite opener.
The visitors gave the Hoops no chance to respond when on 27 minutes Paddy McNulty flicked on a Rovers’ throw-in to McLaughlin who volleyed home from the edge of the area into the bottom right corner of Gallagher’s goal to kill the contest and diminish any hopes of a Hoops revival.
The second half saw Dara Patton’s Hoops up their tempo but the Cappry defence were resolute.
Rovers made a valiant attempt to extend their lead on 65 minutes in what was the highlight of the afternoon when Benny McLaughlin fizzed a thunderbolt from 25 yards which rattled the woodwork in what would have been a Goal of the season contender.
It was enough for the visitors who claimed the crucial three points as they bid for the title while the Hoops have seven games remaining in their battle to avoid relegation from the top flight.
The Hoops would like to thank Cappry Rovers for playing this fixture early on Sunday in order to respect Pat Deeney’s funeral.
Deepest sympathy from all at the club to Pat’s nephew Sean Barrett, a former Hoops legend and manager, and to all of Pat’s family. The club would also like to offer deepest condolences to Rathmullan stalwart and former Chairman, Seamus Gavaghan on the passing of his brother Michael in England.
Referee: Mick Lagan
Kildrum Tigers 3 Lagan Harps 1
This game was devoid of any real action until the Lagan centre forward scored direct from a free kick in the 35th minute.
Kildrum equalised in the 38th minute when Kevin McHugh cooly slotted home from ten yards.
McHugh scored his second on 57 minutes when he sent a blistering shot home from 30 yards. Kildrum scored their third and final goal on the 75th minute when a Kevin McHugh cross was headed home by Conor Matthewson.
Best for Kildrum was Kevin McHugh. Team effort from Lagan Harps.
Temple Domestic Appliances Division One
Gweedore Celtic 0 St. Catherines 0
Gweedore and St. Catherine’s shared the points at a sunny Screaban. The opportunities were few and far between for both teams as both sides defended well. Sean O’Donnell was unlucky not to score after being played in by Conor McCafferty and St Catherine’s also came close from a corner in the second half.
A good team effort from the Celts.
Referee: Seimi Ferry
Keadue Rovers 1 Bonagee United 0
Keadue and Bonagee met at Central Park on Sunday in this crucial top of the table encounter.
The game was played in ideal conditions and after a scrappy opening it was the visitors who had the first chance but they didn’t take it.
In fact, Bonagee had much the better of the first 20 minutes while the home side were a little off the pace having not played for a whole month.
Around the 20-minute mark however Keadue settled down and began to pass it well. A chance fell to Cory Gallagher on 25 minutes but his shot was well saved.
Some moves down the right-hand side were proving potential for the home side and on forty minutes Cory Gallagher shot over after some good passing. Bonagee had the better of the closing exchanges in the first half, passing it around well but it was a stalemate at half time.
Into the second half and Keadue had a goal disallowed on forty-seven minutes with Cory Gallagher’s effort ruled out.
Around the hour mark it was still nip and tuck with both defences on top. Keadue now had more possession and were on the front foot for the most part however Bonagee were always dangerous on the break and went close to nicking a goal on a few occasions.
Keadue upped the tempo and introduced a few subs to freshen things up. In the last ten minutes, they forced some free kicks but to no avail.
When it seemed like it was destined for a draw a long kick out from Danny Rodgers was flicked on by Gavin McGlanaghey and Cory Gallagher ran on to the loose ball and from 20 yards lobbed the advancing keeper in the last minute to secure the points for Danny Doogan’s men.
Best for Bonagee were Drew Connolly and Eamonn Cannon while best for Keadue were Cory Gallagher, Hugh Moy and Chris Greene.
Referee: John Coyle.
Convoy Arsenal 1 Lifford Celtic 3
Lifford took the lead on 19 minutes when a free kick whipped into the area rebounded off the post and came off a Convoy defender and rolled into the net.
Convoy equalised with John A. Kee heading home Emmet Patterson’s cross on 32 minutes. Lifford finished the first half strong forcing a save on 38 minutes followed by a goal mouth clearance on 40 minutes and the pressure paid off as Lifford took the lead on 42 minutes when Kieran Neeson scored from a free-kick.
Lifford started the second half where they left off forcing another save from Lee Boyd. Convoy came back into the game and had a great opportunity
to equalise with Joe McGill heading over on 55 minutes followed by a goal-line clearance by Lifford.
Both teams continued to challenge and Lifford made sure of the win with Kieran Neeson scoring his second goal of the match from another free kick.
Dunkineely Celtic 0 Ballybofey United 6
This game was played in excellent conditions at Darney Park. The play was end to end from the start and in the 19th minute Ballybofey took the lead and dominated the first half from there adding three more goals including a penalty which sent the Dunkineely keeper the wrong way.
Ballybofey started the second half strongly converting shortly after the restart. Dunkineely had chances during a period of pressure but we’re unable to register a score and Ballybofey they went downfield to score their sixth and final goal.
Aaron Byrne best for the home team and Damien Glackin for the visitors having scored four.
Erne Wanderers 2 Raphoe Town 0
Erne Wanderers hosted Raphoe Town on Sunday at the Lakeside Centre and ran out two nil winners. A poor game in truth with the home team happy to get the three points with goals from Joe Stitt and Shane O’Connor on 60 minutes and 90 minutes respectively.
Best for Erne was Joe Stitt while Raphoe battled well all game. Referee: Frank Duff.
Donegal Physiotherapy & Performance Centre Division Two
Curragh Athletic 6 Glenree United 0
Letterbarrow Celtic 0 Cranford United 3
It was perfect conditions in Tymeen for a game of football and both sides got off to a good start in hope to get back to winning ways after the St. Patrick’s weekend break.
Cranford took an early lead after a well worked counter attack. Letterbarrow responded well but failed to find the net.
The second half commenced with Letterbarrow dominating possession but as time began to run out they gambled and pressed high leaving themselves exposed at the back. Cranford got two late goals which blew a dagger in the heart of Letterbarrow’s promotion fight.
A minute silence was held before the game for former Letterbarrow player Tom Ward who died on Wednesday and Emmet Blain from Mountcharles who tragically lost his life in Dubai last week. Everyone at Letterbarrow FC offers their deepest condolences to the Blain and Hegarty family at this difficult time.
Copany Rovers 0 Deele Harps 8
This game was switched to Saturday evening and played under the lights at The Curragh.
The match was effectively over as a contest in the first half. Deele were quick out of the blocks and Copany who suffered a couple of early injuries never really threatened.
Kevin Lynch opened the scoring on 5 minutes, finishing a slick Deele move. Conor Catterson headed home a superb Paul Lynch cross on 10 minutes to double the lead. Kevin Lynch added number three on 14 minutes with a fine solo goal and Jordan Duffy made it 4-0 on 29 minutes with a dribble and finish from 18 yards. Jordan Duffy added another on 35 minutes while Kevin Lynch completed his hat-trick on 40 minutes to make it 6-0 at half time.
Deele rang the changes and the second half saw Jordan Duffy completing his hat-trick on 55 minutes before being replaced but the biggest cheer of the night came when Cathal “Farmer” McGowan struck a fine shot from inside the box for a rare goal. Team performances. Referee: Barry Hunter.
Drumkeen United 2 Kerrykeel ’71 F.C. 0