Donegal Town 2nd XV advanced in the Butler Cup against an understrength Derry YM at the Holmes on Saturday.
After the recent storms and the floods which enveloped the Donegal Town RFC grounds, it was an achievement to have the pitch in such good condition for the encounter.
Donegal Town 2nds 37
Derry YM 12
As it turned out, it was an easy victory for the home side as Derry YM had travelled with just 14 players for the contest.
As a result Donegal Town bossed the opening half and they were in control when the half-time whistle went, leading by 20-0.
It could have been better as they scored three first half tries and only converted one of them.
Ernan Cassidy was the first to breach the Derry YM line and Hugh Morrow added a second try before Cassidy got over again for the third.
Shane Mahon converted the third try and Peter McDyre added a penalty to complete the first half scoring.
Early in the second half two more tries from Declan Bushell and Robert Hanafin (again unconverted) pushed Donegal into an unassailable lead of 30-0.
But fair play to the Derry lads, they never gave up and had their best period in the final quarter, being camped for long periods in the Donegal Town 22 and they got their rewards with the forwards punching holes for two tries, with one of them converted.
But it was Donegal Town who had the final say, with the impressive Gareth McMurray outstripping the Derry YM defence to get over for the final score and Peter McDyre landed the conversion.
Overall, though, it was a pretty easy victory for Gary Prenderville’s boys. He was able to use three replacements at half-time giving valuable game time to members of his squad.
Donegal: Michael Hanafin, Shaun McGill, Robert Hanafin, Shaun Fullerton, Shaun Mahon, David O’Neill, David Corrigan, Daniel Gildea, Hugh Morrow, Peter McDyre, Mark Dolan, Gareth McMurray, Declan Bushell, Shane Mahon, Ernan Cassidy. Substitutes: Ciaran Harley, Joe Gallagher, Paul O’Donnell.