A Kevin ‘Gooch’ Doherty goal in the last minute minute of extra-time gave Downings a dramatic victory in this hard fought Michael Murphy Sports and Leisure Intermediate Championship semi-final.
When these teams met earlier in the competition Termon had a comfortable win and as a result were favourites to advance from this clash to a County Intermediate Championship final. But this proved to be a much toughest test and in a game that had very little between them throughout it took extra-time to separate these two at O Donnell Park , with Downings snatching a last minute goal to win by a point.
Termon started well and had Downings under pressure from the throw-in, Daire McDaid converting an early free and then sending Anthony Grant clean through after an excellent turn-over, Downings keeper Aaron McClafferty denying Grant with a super save.
Oisín Boyce got Downings opening score in the 14th minute but Cian McMenamin replied immediately for Termon. We then had three excellent points in a row from Downings, Ronan Gallagher and Johnny McGroddy from frees and Patrick McElwee from play, 0-04 to 0-03 to Downings.
There was just one more score before half-time, Jack Alcorn from play for Termon to leave one between at the break. Termon hit an big early blow four minutes into the second-half with a Bobby McGettigan goal, Daire McDaid Stevie McElwaine combined to set up the chance and McGettigan flicked the ball to the net from close range , Termon two ahead , 1-03 to 0-04.
The lead didn’t last long as Downings were awarded a penalty after a foul on Lorcan Conner , Ronan Gallagher hammered the ball to the top corner and Downings led by 1-04 to 1-03 in the 42nd minute. They were level again when Anthony Grant pointed from distance and it was anyone’s game as we headed for the last quarter. Daire McDaid’s free put Termon ahead again but after a scoreless period Downings sub Conor Boyce levelled it up again just after coming on, 1-05 apiece with three minutes left.
Another Daire McDaid free put Termon ahead again but in the final minute of injury-time after a foul on Ronan Gallagher, Johnny McGroddy concerted from forty yards to level it again at 1-06 apiece and we were heading off extra-time.Jack Alcorn got the only score of the first period and Termon led again by a point. Sub Jack McSharry received a black card early in the second period and Termon would be down to 14 players for the remainder of the game.
Jack Alcorn pointed again to make it a two point game and Termon looking good but in the last minute of extra-time Downings produced a move involving Lorcan Conner, Kevin Doherty, Conor Boyce and Kevin Doherty again and he hammered the ball to the Termon net to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat as Downings won by a point, 2-06 to 1-08 and Termon wondering how it got away from then so late in the game.
Downings: Aaron McClafferty; Hugo Davis, Ben McNulty, Padraig McGinty; Keelan McGroddy, Ronan Gallagher (1-01), Dean McBride; Oisin Boyce (0-01), Shane Boyce; Kevin Doherty (1-00) , Johnny McGroddy (0-02), Ben McBride, Lorcan Connor, Paddy McElwee (0-01), Allen Pasoma.
Subs: Ronan Pasoma and Conor Boyce (0-01), for McGinty and McBride (both 56mins), Max Davies and Ethan Cullen for Alan Pasoma and Paddy McElwee (0-01).