Spoils shared in Donegal Town

Spoils shared in Donegal Town
The spoils were shared in Tirconaill Park which was a good outcome after an exciting second half.

The spoils were shared in Tirconaill Park which was a good outcome after an exciting second half.

Four Masters 1-11

Gaoth Dobhair 1-11

Conor McDaid and Odhran MacNiallais put on an exhibition of free taking in extremely difficult conditions with a swirling wind. McDaid had the equalising score as the game entered added time from a difficult enough position. The absence of Michael Doherty, who will be missing for a number of weeks, may not be such a worry now to manager Emlyn Hughes.

The other highlight of the game was a goal from Kevin Cassidy in the second half, which was a classic piece of finishing, lobbing Paul Durcan and finding the corner of the net from an angle.

Both sides suffered with the conditions in the opening half and by half-time Gaoth Dobhair were worthy of their 0-6 to 0-4 lead. MacNiallais had two frees on the board inside eight minutes before Conor McDaid replied. Jamie Reynolds pointed from play before two McDaid frees tied up the game on 24 minutes.

Michael Roarty and Stephen Keeney traded points before Gaoth Dobhair struck for two late points, Ronan MacNiallais firing over after a great run through the Four Masters defence while Kevin Cassidy won a free for Odhran MacNiallais pointed for the final point of the half.

Within six minutes of the restart Four Masters were in front with Conor McDaid pointing a free on four minutes and then a high ball was broken by Sean Boyle and Stephen Keeney was quickly on to the loose ball to tap to the empty net.

Odhran MacNiallais was nearly in for a Gaoth Dobhair goal but hit the sidenetting but Kevin Cassidy had his side a point ahead on 38 minutes when he hit an excellent lob to beat Paul Durcan.

From there to the end it was point for point. Conor McDaid and Peadar Espey pushed the home side two clear but Kevin Cassidy and Anthony Blair replied.

Stephen Keeney won the free for McDaid to level matters at 1-8 each on 47 minutes before Odhran MacNiallais with two mighty frees pushed Gaoth Dobhair two clear again.

But Four Masters replied with Stephen Keeney and another McDaid free to level matters in the 55th minute.

A minute from time it seemed as if Joe Duffy had got the winner for Gaoth Dobhair but Barry Dunnion drove upfield and won a free for McDaid to level matters for the last time.

It was a very good, competitive game. Both sides were short a number of regulars because of injury and soccer commitments.

It was good to see Barry Dunnion back at the heart of the Four Masters defence and he had one his best games in a club jersey for some time. He had good help from Barry Farragher, Jamie McCrea, Barry Monaghan, Luke Keaney, Stephen Keeney and Conor McDaid.

For Gaoth Dobhair, Eamon McGee, Donal McBride, Kevin Cassidy, the MacNiallais brothers and Jamie Reynolds were best.

Four Masters: Paul Durcan; Jamie McCrea, Barry Farragher, Ryan O’Donnell; Sean O’Kennedy, Barry Dunnion, Josh Lacey; Barry Monaghan, Luke Keaney; John Boyle, Shane Carr, Kevin McBrearty; Peader Espey (0-1), Stephen Keeney (1-2), Conor McDaid (0-8,8f). Subs., Dillon Ward for S Carr 15; Don Monaghan for Boyle 46; Ciaran Cassidy for Espey 52.

Gaoth Dobhair: Christopher Sweeney; Sean McGarvey, Eamon McGee, Manus Weed; Joe Duffy (0-1), Donal McBride, Ciaran Ferry; Kevin Cassidy (1-1), Ronan MacNiallais (0-1); Anthony Blair (0-1), Odhran MacNiallais (0-5,5f), Jamie Reynolds (0-1); Michael Roarty (0-1), James Gallagher, Sean Doherty. Subs., Proinnsias Gallagher for Roarty 41; Danny Curran for Ferry 60.

Referee: Jimmy White (Killybegs)