Ulster much too good for Connacht

Peter Campbell

Reporter:

Peter Campbell

The scoreline didn’t flatter Ulster as they completely overpowered Connacht in the semi-final in Markievicz Park on Sunday.

The scoreline didn’t flatter Ulster as they completely overpowered Connacht in the semi-final in Markievicz Park on Sunday.

CONNACHT 0-13

ULSTER 3-16

The three Donegal players - Neil McGee, Karl Lacey and Rory Kavanagh - played their part with McGee particularly impressive, getting forward to put Mark Poland through on goal on 50 seconds with the Down man hammering his shot off the crossbar.

McGee was on his travels forward again on six minutes, combining with Karl Lacey to win a free pointed by Martin Penrose, while he had a shot off target in the second half.

Rory Kavanagh had the opening point for Ulster inside two minutes and played his part in a dominant midfield partnership with Dan Gordon.

The opening ten minutes were even enough but a goal from Peter Harte after he combined with Poland, on 11 minutes set Ulster on their way.

Mark Poland added the second goal on 16 minutes, getting on the end of an exquisite Owen Mulligan 40 yard pass to leave Ulster well on their way to victory, leading by 2-10 to 0-5 at the break.

Conor Mortimer was the only Connacht forward who looked likely and he had their only point from play in the opening half, while accounting for four of the other scores from placed ball. Indeed, Connacht could only manage one point from play in the second half also.

Frees from Mortimer and a disappointing Donie Shine inside three minutes of the restart, was just a blip for Ulster as they again took control before Martin Penrose started and finished the third goal on 53 minutes, combining well with Peter Harte. After that it was just a matter of playing out time and the Donegal supporters in the attendance of around 500, were glad to see Rory Kavanagh and Karl Lacey given a rest before the end.

Benny Coulter was the only Ulster starting forward not to get on the scoreboard and that was due to the tight marking of Connacht’s best player, Sean McDermott. Gareth Bradshaw, Johnny Davey and Mortimer were the only other Connacht players to make any real contribution.

For Ulster - who had nine different scorers - Neil McGee, Ciaran McKeever, Dan Gordon, Rory Kavanagh and the entire front line were excellent.

Connacht: Geoffrey Claffey; Sean McDermott, Sean Purcell, Charlie Harrison; Gareth Bradshaw, Johnny Davey, Wayne McKeon (0-1); Michael Finneran, Brendan Egan; Kevin McLaughlin, Donie Shine (0-2,2f), Alan Dillon; Conor Mortimer (0-9,8f), Adrian Marren, Nicky Joyce (0-1,f). Subs, Tom Flynn for Egan; Kevin Hughes for Joyce, both ht; Michael Conroy for Marren 44; Paul Conroy for Finneran 55; Mark Breheny for Shine 62.

Ulster: Brendan McVeigh; Brendan Donaghy, Neil McGee, Karl Lacey; Ciaran McKeever (0-1), Darren Hughes, James Loughrey (0-1); Dan Gordon (0-2), Rory Kavanagh (0-1); Peter Harte (1-2), Mark Poland (1-0), Conleth Gilligan (0-3); Martin Penrose (1-4,3f), Benny Coulter, Owen Mulligan (0-2). Subs., Vincent Corey for Loughrey 55; Mark Donnelly for Coulter 60; Owen Lennon for Kavanagh 63; Colin McCarron for Lacey 66

Referee: Joe Curley (Meath)

Man of the match

Apart from Sean McDermott of Connacht, all contenders were wearing Ulster jerseys. Ciaran McKeever, Peter Harte, Mark Poland, Conleth Gilligan and Martin Penrose were the main contenders with the award going to Harte, who was very incisive when on the ball.

Turning point

The opening goal from Peter Harte turned the game. Up to that it was close, but thereafter there was only going to be one winner.

Ref watch

Meath referee Joe Curley had an easy game with both sides concentrating on football and he will rarely have an easier game to officiate.

McGee delighted to be involved

For Donegal’s Neil McGee, this was new territory, playing his first ever game for Ulster and he was delighted with the result.

“It was a little easier than we would have expected, but it is great to be involved. This is my first ever time playing for Ulster,” said the big Gaoth Dobhair man.

“I got forward a good bit today but I would need to improve on my shooting,” quipped the All-Star, when I reminded him that maybe he thought he was playing against Sligo, the side he scored the dramatic late goal against last year in the opening league game.

“It’s great to be involved with Ulster. I got to know some of the boys when out in Australia and it was great to meet them again. Hopefully we can go on now and win the final. It would be nice to add that medal to the collection. I think Rory (Kavanagh) has played for Ulster before but he hasn’t a medal either,” said Neil.

“We had a get-together last week and we will probably have the same this week. It was just a light workout and it helped for players to get to know each other. We don’t know yet when the final will be but it could possibly be next Sunday.”

The scoreline didn’t flatter Ulster as they completely overpowered Connacht in the semi-final in Markievicz Park on Sunday.

The scoreline didn’t flatter Ulster as they completely overpowered Connacht in the semi-final in Markievicz Park on Sunday.

CONNACHT 0-13

ULSTER 3-16

The three Donegal players - Neil McGee, Karl Lacey and Rory Kavanagh - played their part with McGee particularly impressive, getting forward to put Mark Poland through on goal on 50 seconds with the Down man hammering his shot off the crossbar.

McGee was on his travels forward again on six minutes, combining with Karl Lacey to win a free pointed by Martin Penrose, while he had a shot off target in the second half.

Rory Kavanagh had the opening point for Ulster inside two minutes and played his part in a dominant midfield partnership with Dan Gordon.

The opening ten minutes were even enough but a goal from Peter Harte after he combined with Poland, on 11 minutes set Ulster on their way.

Mark Poland added the second goal on 16 minutes, getting on the end of an exquisite Owen Mulligan 40 yard pass to leave Ulster well on their way to victory, leading by 2-10 to 0-5 at the break.

Conor Mortimer was the only Connacht forward who looked likely and he had their only point from play in the opening half, while accounting for four of the other scores from placed ball. Indeed, Connacht could only manage one point from play in the second half also.

Frees from Mortimer and a disappointing Donie Shine inside three minutes of the restart, was just a blip for Ulster as they again took control before Martin Penrose started and finished the third goal on 53 minutes, combining well with Peter Harte. After that it was just a matter of playing out time and the Donegal supporters in the attendance of around 500, were glad to see Rory Kavanagh and Karl Lacey given a rest before the end.

Benny Coulter was the only Ulster starting forward not to get on the scoreboard and that was due to the tight marking of Connacht’s best player, Sean McDermott. Gareth Bradshaw, Johnny Davey and Mortimer were the only other Connacht players to make any real contribution.

For Ulster - who had nine different scorers - Neil McGee, Ciaran McKeever, Dan Gordon, Rory Kavanagh and the entire front line were excellent.

Connacht: Geoffrey Claffey; Sean McDermott, Sean Purcell, Charlie Harrison; Gareth Bradshaw, Johnny Davey, Wayne McKeon (0-1); Michael Finneran, Brendan Egan; Kevin McLaughlin, Donie Shine (0-2,2f), Alan Dillon; Conor Mortimer (0-9,8f), Adrian Marren, Nicky Joyce (0-1,f). Subs, Tom Flynn for Egan; Kevin Hughes for Joyce, both ht; Michael Conroy for Marren 44; Paul Conroy for Finneran 55; Mark Breheny for Shine 62.

Ulster: Brendan McVeigh; Brendan Donaghy, Neil McGee, Karl Lacey; Ciaran McKeever (0-1), Darren Hughes, James Loughrey (0-1); Dan Gordon (0-2), Rory Kavanagh (0-1); Peter Harte (1-2), Mark Poland (1-0), Conleth Gilligan (0-3); Martin Penrose (1-4,3f), Benny Coulter, Owen Mulligan (0-2). Subs., Vincent Corey for Loughrey 55; Mark Donnelly for Coulter 60; Owen Lennon for Kavanagh 63; Colin McCarron for Lacey 66

Referee: Joe Curley (Meath)

Man of the match

Apart from Sean McDermott of Connacht, all contenders were wearing Ulster jerseys. Ciaran McKeever, Peter Harte, Mark Poland, Conleth Gilligan and Martin Penrose were the main contenders with the award going to Harte, who was very incisive when on the ball.

Turning point

The opening goal from Peter Harte turned the game. Up to that it was close, but thereafter there was only going to be one winner.

Ref watch

Meath referee Joe Curley had an easy game with both sides concentrating on football and he will rarely have an easier game to officiate.

McGee delighted to be involved

For Donegal’s Neil McGee, this was new territory, playing his first ever game for Ulster and he was delighted with the result.

“It was a little easier than we would have expected, but it is great to be involved. This is my first ever time playing for Ulster,” said the big Gaoth Dobhair man.

“I got forward a good bit today but I would need to improve on my shooting,” quipped the All-Star, when I reminded him that maybe he thought he was playing against Sligo, the side he scored the dramatic late goal against last year in the opening league game.

“It’s great to be involved with Ulster. I got to know some of the boys when out in Australia and it was great to meet them again. Hopefully we can go on now and win the final. It would be nice to add that medal to the collection. I think Rory (Kavanagh) has played for Ulster before but he hasn’t a medal either,” said Neil.

“We had a get-together last week and we will probably have the same this week. It was just a light workout and it helped for players to get to know each other. We don’t know yet when the final will be but it could possibly be next Sunday.”

Rory Kavanagh gives chase to Connacht’s Kevin McLaughlin in the Interprovincial semi-final in Markievicz Park on Sunday. Photo ©INPHO/James Crombie

Ulster much too good

CONNACHT 0-13

ULSTER 3-16

The three Donegal players - Neil McGee, Karl Lacey and Rory Kavanagh - played their part with McGee particularly impressive, getting forward to put Mark Poland through on goal on 50 seconds with the Down man hammering his shot off the crossbar.

McGee was on his travels forward again on six minutes, combining with Karl Lacey to win a free pointed by Martin Penrose, while he had a shot off target in the second half.

Rory Kavanagh had the opening point for Ulster inside two minutes and played his part in a dominant midfield partnership with Dan Gordon.

The opening ten minutes were even enough but a goal from Peter Harte after he combined with Poland, on 11 minutes set Ulster on their way.

Mark Poland added the second goal on 16 minutes, getting on the end of an exquisite Owen Mulligan 40 yard pass to leave Ulster well on their way to victory, leading by 2-10 to 0-5 at the break.

Conor Mortimer was the only Connacht forward who looked likely and he had their only point from play in the opening half, while accounting for four of the other scores from placed ball. Indeed, Connacht could only manage one point from play in the second half also.

Frees from Mortimer and a disappointing Donie Shine inside three minutes of the restart, was just a blip for Ulster as they again took control before Martin Penrose started and finished the third goal on 53 minutes, combining well with Peter Harte. After that it was just a matter of playing out time and the Donegal supporters in the attendance of around 500, were glad to see Rory Kavanagh and Karl Lacey given a rest before the end.

Benny Coulter was the only Ulster starting forward not to get on the scoreboard and that was due to the tight marking of Connacht’s best player, Sean McDermott. Gareth Bradshaw, Johnny Davey and Mortimer were the only other Connacht players to make any real contribution.

For Ulster - who had nine different scorers - Neil McGee, Ciaran McKeever, Dan Gordon, Rory Kavanagh and the entire front line were excellent.

Connacht: Geoffrey Claffey; Sean McDermott, Sean Purcell, Charlie Harrison; Gareth Bradshaw, Johnny Davey, Wayne McKeon (0-1); Michael Finneran, Brendan Egan; Kevin McLaughlin, Donie Shine (0-2,2f), Alan Dillon; Conor Mortimer (0-9,8f), Adrian Marren, Nicky Joyce (0-1,f). Subs, Tom Flynn for Egan; Kevin Hughes for Joyce, both ht; Michael Conroy for Marren 44; Paul Conroy for Finneran 55; Mark Breheny for Shine 62.

Ulster: Brendan McVeigh; Brendan Donaghy, Neil McGee, Karl Lacey; Ciaran McKeever (0-1), Darren Hughes, James Loughrey (0-1); Dan Gordon (0-2), Rory Kavanagh (0-1); Peter Harte (1-2), Mark Poland (1-0), Conleth Gilligan (0-3); Martin Penrose (1-4,3f), Benny Coulter, Owen Mulligan (0-2). Subs., Vincent Corey for Loughrey 55; Mark Donnelly for Coulter 60; Owen Lennon for Kavanagh 63; Colin McCarron for Lacey 66

Referee: Joe Curley (Meath)

Man of the match

Apart from Sean McDermott of Connacht, all contenders were wearing Ulster jerseys. Ciaran McKeever, Peter Harte, Mark Poland, Conleth Gilligan and Martin Penrose were the main contenders with the award going to Harte, who was very incisive when on the ball.

Turning point

The opening goal from Peter Harte turned the game. Up to that it was close, but thereafter there was only going to be one winner.

Ref watch

Meath referee Joe Curley had an easy game with both sides concentrating on football and he will rarely have an easier game to officiate.

McGee delighted to be involved

For Donegal’s Neil McGee, this was new territory, playing his first ever game for Ulster and he was delighted with the result.

“It was a little easier than we would have expected, but it is great to be involved. This is my first ever time playing for Ulster,” said the big Gaoth Dobhair man.

“I got forward a good bit today but I would need to improve on my shooting,” quipped the All-Star, when I reminded him that maybe he thought he was playing against Sligo, the side he scored the dramatic late goal against last year in the opening league game.

“It’s great to be involved with Ulster. I got to know some of the boys when out in Australia and it was great to meet them again. Hopefully we can go on now and win the final. It would be nice to add that medal to the collection. I think Rory (Kavanagh) has played for Ulster before but he hasn’t a medal either,” said Neil.

“We had a get-together last week and we will probably have the same this week. It was just a light workout and it helped for players to get to know each other. We don’t know yet when the final will be but it could possibly be next Sunday.”