A brilliant opening half, garnished by two somewhat lucky goals, was the basis for this well deserved victory for an impressive but somewhat understrength Bundoran over an outgunned but tenacious Termon side at a balmy Gaelic Park yesterday.
Bundoran . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3-15
Termon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2-8
The wind-assisted home side turned over with a 2-9 to 0-2 half-time lead, which really left no way back for the losers.
To their credit they clipped in two early goals in the second half as the introduction of ex-county start Kevin 'Wappa' McMenamin improved matters.
And they were within seven points of the winners when Wappa found the net in the 45th minute.
But a rash challenge saw them lose Declan O’Donnell to a red card and a beautifully finished Niall Carr goal effectively ended Termon’s interest in the 5oth minute.
The Termon bench was very vocal about some of referee Connie Doherty’s decisions and he actually booked one of them as tempers frayed a little in the heat.
And while there were a few decisions that did not go their way, it had no impact on a game where Bundoran was the better side for long periods.
Veteran Bundoran corner forward, Tommy Hourihane, got Bundoran’s crucial first half goals and both were very opportunistic.
The first one came in the 20th minute when a Christy Keaney (whose hands were like glue in the first half) shot came off the crossbar and Hourihane reacted quickest and scramble the ball to the net.
Three minutes later, he struck again, as a shot from the excellent beavering Johnny Boyle came off Termon keeper Conor Tinney’s legs and Hourihane forced the loose ball over the line.
It took the losers a full 23 minutes to get on the scoreboard from midfielder Caolan Mellett.
But with Michael McEniff, the superb Paul Brennan, Peter McGonigle and Ciaran McCaughey driving the Seasiders, the points flowed from the elegant Alan Russell and a fine effort from Brennan.
Termon were restricted to breakaway raids where lively veteran Johnny McCafferty and Daire McDaid tried hard to rally their shellshocked troops.
And the losers had a fine third quarter with the elusive Caolan McDaid finding the Bundoran net after ghosting in from the wing, after just two minutes.
'Wappa' McMenamin was also causing a few anxious moments and he added another goal in the 45th minute.
Sudden there was only seven points between the teams as Bundoran’s giant lead had been whittled down to 2-12 to 2-7.
But indiscipline cost Termon against a Bundoran side that was only slightly shaken and never really stirred.
Carr finished a superb movement to the net a few minutes later and Paul Brennan (who would walk on the Leitrim or Fermanagh squad on this display, if Donegal still don’t want him) hit a wonderful point.
The final minutes were unnecessarily tetchy as Bundoran added a few more points to complete a comprehensive victory.
It was even more impressive when you consider that they did it without the McGowan brothers, Jamie Brennan (who is in Rory Gallagher’s extended squad), James Keaney, Diarmuid McCaughey, Diarmuid Spratt and Gary Clancy (the latter two are Stateside).
But the remainder is part of a squad that is well capable of staying in Division One.
Bundoran: Conor Carty; Pauric Rooney, Peter McGonigle, Matthew Ward; Michael McEniff, Paul Brennan (0-2), Johnny Boyle; Ciaran McCaughey, Niall Dunne; Dara Hoey (0-1), Alan Russell (0-4), Shane Moohan (0-1); Tommy Hourihane (2-0), Christy Keaney (0-5,3f,45), Niall Carr (1-1). Subs; Timmy Govorov (0-1) for S Moohan 40 , N McGonigle for N Carr 54, A Croghan for C Keaney 58
Termon: Conor Tinney; Anthony McGrenra (0-1), Kevin McDaid (0-1), Stephen McElwaine; Shane Callaghan, Kevin McElwaine, James McSharry; Brendan Friel, Caolan Mellett (0-1); Nathan McElwaine, Aidan Sweeney, Daire McDaid (0-2,1f), Caolan McDaid (1-2), Johnny McCafferty (0-1), Daniel Conaghan. Subs: Declan O’Donnell for James McSharry 9 inj, K 'Wappa' McMenamin 1-0 for C Mellett ht, Pauric McDaid for S McElwaine 48
Referee: C Doherty (N Conaill)