Stephen Griffin scored a goal and eight points as St.Naul’s booked their place in the junior final with an eight point win over An Cheathrú Rua.
St. Naul’s 2-12
An Cheathrú Rua (Galway) 0-9
St. Naul’s playing into a strong breeze had the better of the fist half exchanges and deservedly led by seven points at half-time, 2-5 to 0-4.
Stephen Griffin scored one of the goals from the penalty spot with full-forward Barry Breen netting the second.
Griffin sent the goalkeeper the wrong way before drilling straight down the middle after Liam McGroarty was hauled down inside the large rectangle.
That was on 11 minutes and St. Naul’s were leading 0-3 to 0-2 at time with John Rose and Griffin (2) the St. Naul’s scorers with Angus McDonagh and Kevin Gannon posting one each for An Cheathrú Rua.
Griffin, with two more strikes and one from McDonagh meant it was a five point game when Breen polished off a sweeping move to slip the ball past the advancing Ciaran McDonagh for goal number two and an eight point advantage.
An Cheathru Rua did put on a spurt with four points without reply at the start of the second half with Padraig Mullen, Stephen O’Brien, Martin Connelly, and Matthew Donnelly all raising white flags.
But Cathal Lowther stopped the rot and with Griffin hitting three quick points Naul’s were back in control and on their way to the final. And they closed the game out with late points from Brian McCabe and Breen.
St. Naul’s: Lee McBrearty; Conor McBrearty, Gavin Maguire, Enda Lynch; John Rose (0-1), Stuart Johnston, Barry Griffin; Fiachra McGinley, Shane Conneelly; Stephen Griffin (1-8,3f), Barry Rose, Liam McGroarty; James Flynn, Brendan Breen (1-1,1f), Cathal Lowther (0-1). Subs: Mark Ward for B. Rose (43); Micheal Quinn for J. Flynn (55); Brian McCabe (0-1) for L. McGroarty (57); Shane McDevitt for S. Griffin (58).
An Cheathrú Rua: Ciaran McDonagh; David Connelly, Iarla Griffin, Martin Conneely (0-1); Liam O’ Domhnaill, P. J O’Domhnaill (0-1), Conal O’Malley; Kevin Cannon (0-1), Sean O’Domhnaill, Oisin Breathanach; Matthew O’Domhnaill (0-2), Brendan Lydon; Padraig Flaherty, Angus McDonagh (0-2). Padraig De Paor. Subs: Padraig Mullan (0-1) for O. Breathanach (28); Stephen O’Brien (0-1) for K.Gannon (35);.
Referee: Barry Cassidy (Derry)
Clan Na Gael (Meath) 2-9
Termon completed the all-Donegal junior final line-up with a comfortable victory over Clan Na Gael, in the second of the junior semi-finals on the new pitch at Maghergallen.
The Burn Road men dominated from the moment Aidan Sweeney struck the first of his two goals inside three minutes. And they had cruised into a 16 point lead courtesy of a second Sweeney goal and points from Michael Boyle, Daniel Connaghan, Sean O’Donnell, Trevor Alcorn, Sweeney and Daire McDaid by the 40 minute mark before easing off and turning their thoughts to the final and St. Nauls.
Sweeney’s goal after a defence splitting pass from Tomas Cullen set them on their way and with the strong wind in their backs the points flowed with Michael Boyle scoring four (two from frees and two 45s), before Darren Kelly got the Meath men off the mark.
Kelly converted from the penalty spot on 22 minutes after a Termon defender was judged to have picked the ball off the ground in the small rectangle. Corner back Matthew Houlihan was the only other Clan Na Gael first half scorer as rampant Termon went in 1-12 to 1-1 in front at the interval.
And with Sweeney netting his second three pointer early on the resumption and Daire McDaid landing three points into the stiff breeze Termon were on their way. And with Tommy Ryan ringing the changes and resting players for the final the men from the Royal Co did add respectability in the final quarter.
Sean Daly converted two frees, Damien Tuite struck for a second Clan Na Gael goal before Daly hit three points and Tuite brought down the curtain with a point on the stroke of time.
Anthony McGrenra, shortly after being introduced, scored Termon’s only point of the final quarter.
Termon: Michael Boyle (0-4,2f, 2,45); Joe O’Donnell, John McDaid, Barry Nelis; Daniel Conaghan (0-1), Kevin McIlwaine, Sean O’Donnell (0-1); Thomas Cullen, Kevin McGettigan; Kevin McDaid, Aidan Sweeney (2-1), Martin Sweeney (0-1); Paddy McDaid, Trevor Alcorn (0-3), Darragh McDaid (0-4,3f). Subs., Stephen McIlwaine for P. McDaid (42); Francie Friel for D. McDaid (45); Anthony McGrenra (0-1) for M. Sweeney (55).
Clan Na Gael: Damien Griffin; Matthew Houlihan (0-1), Anthony Cully, Padraig Joyce; Karl Kelly, Eamonn Connolly, Adam Caffrey; Sean Daly(0-6,3f), Darren Kelly (1-1), Damien Tuite (1-1), Aaron McDonagh; Brian Kirk, Thomas Phelan, Jim Brennan, Alan Kelly.Sub: Ciaran Ryan for P. Joyce.
Referee: Barry McErlaine (Derry).