Kilcar qualified for the quarter-finals of the Donegal Senior Championship after a deserved victory over St Michael’s in a sun-drenched Dunfanaghy on Sunday.
St. Michael’s 1-14
John McNulty’s side were much superior in the first half, and went in at the interval six points ahead with Ryan McHugh scoring an excellent goal. St Michael’s had the wind advantage in the second half, but they could not claw back the deficit, and Kilcar held on for the win.
St Michael’s lined out without the injured Christy Toye, but they made a good start with Martin McElhinney and Andrew Kelly scoring to put them two points up after three minutes.
However, Kilcar soon settled into the game and a Patrick McBrearty free followed by a fine score from play levelled up proceedings. Ryan McHugh added a free before McBrearty kicked a point from an acute angle. Daniel McLaughlin pointed in the 10th minute, and Brian McLaughlin levelled the teams with a free four minutes later.
Kilcar were winning all the breaks at midfield, and with Mark McHugh and McBrearty linking up superbly they began to exert their dominance. McBrearty pointed in the 15th minute and Hegarty kicked a fine point, before the Towney outfit struck for the first goal of the contest.
A long ball inside to the full-forward line was broken down to McBrearty by Barry Doherty and the county forward showed superb vision to spot the run of the onrushing Ryan McHugh. McHugh was composed and fired the ball low past Ciaran Gallagher.
Colm McFadden replied with a free, but Mark McHugh cancelled it out with a huge point in the 22nd minute. Doherty had a chance of goal but took his point, before Colm McFadden kicked two points. However, Kilcar veteran Michael Hegarty had the final say of the half with two spectacular curling efforts to leave Kilcar in command at half-time.
Martin McElhinney had a great goal chance directly from the restart, but his effort drifted just wide. Substitute Stephen Coyle scored a free for Charlie McLaughlin’s team, but Kilcar hit back with points from Patrick McBrearty (free) and Ryan McHugh.
Andrew Kelly split the posts for St Michael’s but the influential Ryan McHugh responded with a free in the 38th minute. Two minutes later, McBrearty took advantage of sloppy defensive play from St Michael’s to put Kilcar eight points ahead.
A free each from Coyle and McFadden and good scores from Daniel McLaughlin and Coyle brought St Michael’s back into the game. Kilcar went 15 minutes without scoring, before Patrick McBrearty split the posts in the 55th minute. He landed a free moments later, and Kilcar looked to have sealed the win.
Yet, St Michael’s were not prepared to give up, and the effective Brian McLaughlin won a penalty when he was upended by Conor McShane. Colm McFadden sent Kilcar goalkeeper, Eamon McGinley the wrong way to put just a goal between the teams.
McFadden had a chance to draw the game in injury time, when he collected a high ball from Andrew Kelly. However, the usually deadly McFadden could not keep the ball low and the ball went over the bar.
St Michael’s had two late ‘45s’ but they could not work a goal opportunity and Kilcar held on to secure their place in the quarter-finals.
St Michael’s will now have to beat Glenswilly in their final group game, and hope Kilcar avoid defeat against Bundoran, if they are to make it to the last eight.
St Michael’s: Ciaran Gallagher, Stephen Doak, Stephen Black, Brendan Rodden, James Alcorn, Michael McGinley, Michael Gallagher, Martin McElhinney (0-1), Peter Witherow, Daniel McLaughlin (0-2), Ciaran Gallagher, Antoin McFadden, Colm McFadden (1-5, 1 pen, 4f), Brian McLaughlin(0-1, 1f), Andrew Kelly (0-2). Subs: Stephen Coyle (0-3, 2f) and Liam Paul Ferry for Witherow and Black (ht), Raymond McLaughlin for Coyle (53 mins).
Kilcar: Eamon McGinley, Pauric Carr, Conor McShane, Barry McGinley, Ciaran McGinley,3r Mark McHugh (0-1), Barry Shovlin Michael Hegarty (0-3), David McShane, Aodhan McGinley, Ryan Mc Hugh (1-3, 2f), Patrick Gallagher, Barry Doherty (0-1), Paddy McBrearty (0-8, 3f), Mark Sweeney. Subs: Stephen McBrearty and Glen McBrearty for Doherty and Sweeney (49 mins)
Referee: Martin Coll (Gaoth Dobhair)
St Michael’s 0-7
St Michael’s are through to the quarter finals of the Donegal Reserve Championship after a hard-fought win over Kilcar.
Patrick Stewart and Chris McElhinney were superb as the Dunfanaghy side won through, despite being held scoreless for the opening 20 minutes.
St Michael’s: J Gallagher, S Horan, N Toye, H McGee, G Gallagher, C McElhinney (0-2), J Sheridan, L McDaid, P Baird, K McGee, B McGinley, S McPhilimeny , D Doak, P McFadden, P Stewart (0-4). Subs: J McFadden for McGee (23 mins), K McGee (0-1, 1f) for McFadden (37 mins), O Langan for Doak (52 mins), R McLaughlin for McGee (60 mins)
Kilcar: K Boyle, C Cunningham, M Byrne, L Carr, J Carr, J Cunningham, A McClean, D O’Donnell, C Cannon (0-1), G O’Donnell, D Gallagher, K Campbell (0-1), D McCloiskey, D O’Donnell, G McBrearty (0-3,1f). Subs: C Cunningham for M Byrne (15mins), R McGinley for C Cunningham (half time), C Cunningham for D O’Donnell (27mins).