Donegal Junior A Football Championship final

Carlin the 'goalden' boy as Red Hugh's are crowned Donegal Junior A champions

James Carlin scored four goals for the winners

Tom Comack

Reporter:

Tom Comack

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tom.comack@donegaldemocrat.com

Carlin the goalden boy as Red Hughs are crowned champions

Stephen McMenamin was outstanding for Red Hughs, against Urris, in today's final

James Carlin will forever have his name etched in Red Hugh's history and folklore following his four goals in their County Junior A final victory over Urris, at a very wet and damp O’Donnell Park, this afternoon.

Red Hughs ........... 4-9
Urris ......................0-5

The elusive Carlin scored two of the goals in the first half which all but wrapped up the title for the men from the Cross by half-time.
Red Hugh's were completely on top from the off and led 2-8 to 0-3 at the break, thanks to Carlin’s two green flags and points from Calvin Bradley, Gerard Melaugh, Damian Browne and Peadar McGlinchey.
And while the champions' strike rate was reduced in the second period Carlin, with two more green flags, and a Browne pointed free meant there was never going to be anything but one result.
This was a polished performance from a well drilled Red Hugh's in very difficult and wet conditions as the rain poured down on O’Donnell Park right throughout the game.
Carlin apart, county man Stephen McMenamin was the outstanding player on the field with his driving runs from middle of the field penning Urris back time after time and he had a hand in at least three of the goals.
He was closely followed by team captain Gerard Melaugh, Damian Browne, Pauric McMenamin, Peadar McGlinchey and Calvin Bradley, who all turned in big performances.
Red Hugh's got off to a lightning start and led 0-4 to 0-1 after five minutes.
Calvin Bradley nailed the first on 12 seconds after Stephen McMenamin won the throw-in and raced through the middle before off loading to Bradley.
Gerard Melaugh and Damian Browne raised white flags before Mickey Grant opened the Urris account on five minutes.
But this was a temporary setback as Melaugh, Bradley (with his second), Damian Browne (from play and a free) extended the Red Hugh's lead out to six points.
Ahead 0-7 to 0-1 ahead after 14 minutes, it got better one minute later when James Carlin flicked the first of his two goals to the net for a 1-7 to 0-1 lead.
And with Red Hugh's continuing to dominate and with one hand on the Dr McCloskey Cup, Carlin struck for his and his team's second goal on the stroke of half-time for a 2-8 to 0-3 lead.
Ryan Doherty (R) and Conor Bradley scored the other two Urris points.
Conor Bradley posted the first point of the second half for an Urris outfit that were playing with a little more bite in their game.
But with Red Hugh's battling for every ball as if their lives depended on it they weren't allowed back in. And the victory was sealed early in the second period when Carlin pounced for goals number three and four in the space of four minutes for a 4-8 to 0-4 lead by the 43rd minute.
As underfoot conditions worsened the game fizzled out with Peter Devlin and Damien Browne posting the only two points in the closing quarter.

RED HUGH'S: Ciaran Kelly; Cathal Doherty, Sean Sweeney, Ryan Kelly; Gary Kelly, Gerard Melaugh (0-2), Thomas McMenamin; Peadar McGlinchey (0-1,'45), Stephen McMenamin; Damian Browne (0-4,3f), Pauric McMenamin, Stephen McGlinchey; James Carlin (4-0), Shane Gallagher, Calvin Bradley (0-2). Subs; Jonathan Carlin for P McMenamin 50; Odhran Doherty for J Carlin 56; Michael Devine for S McGlinchey 57; Eugene Brown for S Sweeney 58; PJ Gallagher for C Bradley 60.

URRIS: Paddy Harkin; James Griffin, Kieran Kelly, Michael Grant (0-1); Brendan Doherty, Andy Doherty, Gary Doherty; John McCarron, Paddy Doherty; Ryan Doherty (J), Alan Friel, Conor Bradley (0-2,1f); Ryan Doherty (R), Dean Kelly, Mark McLaughlin. Subs: Oisin Hession for R Doherty (J),Peter Devlin (0-1) for D Doherty both at h/t; Charlie Doherty for R Doherty (R),Luke Devlin for Brendan Doherty, both 45; John McDaid fo John McCarron 50; Brian Doherty for A Friel 54.

REFEREE: Robbie O’Donnell (Naomh Muire)