Stung pride is a powerful motivator, as Donegal hurling blue bloods Burt showed against a gritty but outgunned Aodh Ruadh side in this one-side affair in Father Tierney Park.
Aodh Ruadh 1-9
Short about six regulars, they slumped to a surprising defeat to St Eunans last week but a full strength side, apart from the suspended Niall Campbell had far too much firepower for the home side.
A dazzling scoring salvo from Ronan McDermott, Enda McDermott and Mickey McCann effectively blew away the Ballyshannon challenge after just five minutes as the fully focused winner sprinted into a 3-2 0-1 lead.
Aodh Ruadh marksman Ciaran Kilgallen gave Aodh Ruadh an early lead, but goals from the nippy Ronan and Enda McDermott and a Mickey McCann goal set the pattern.
This deadly trio accounted for 6-13 of the Burt total although they finished up with 14 men when wing forward Kyle McGrath was sent off for a second yellow card offence by Fermanagh referee Aidan Ferguson in the 50th minute.
But this match was well over at this stage as Burt were well worth their 5-10 to 1-5 half-time lead with the McDermotts grabbing two more goals and a several points.
And with Joe Boyle in masterful form at centre back for Burt, there was very little room for Aodh Ruadh to strike back.
For the losers, a highlight was a superb 80 metre free converted by Chris Killgallen.
And the Ballyshannon goal was a well -worked affair between Johnny Dolan and Declan Browne who flicked to the net with aplomb in the 15th minute.
Aodh Ruadh fared much better in a low scoring second half where the scoring rate dropped dramatically as Burt could only add 1-5 to their total while Ciaran Kilgallen got all of Aodh Ruadh’s points from frees.
The second half was a much more keenly contested matter and Aodh Ruadh were minus Paul Sheridan, Colm Kelly, Eamon McGrath, Niall Harley and Cian Dolan for various reasons.
Their presence might have made matters slightly more interesting on a night when Burt showed all their old class, craft and wounded pride.
But this big win for Burt should ensure yet another appearance in a county final as their scoring average rocketed after this victory.
E McDermott (3-7), Ronan McDermott (2-65f) M McCann (1-2), A McDe,rmott (0-1).
Aodh Ruadh scorers;
Ciaran Kilgallen (0-6,6f) D Browne (1-0), Chris Kilgallon (0-1f), P Horan (0-1), D Hayden (0-1).
Referee: A Ferguson (Erne Gaels)
Henderson fires MacCumhaill’s to victory
Sean MacCumahills 1-13
St Eunan’s 1-12
A stupendous free from his own 65 metre line from Ballybofey marksman Lee Henderson broke St Eunans hearts in this thrilling affair in Ballybofey.
The county marksman, who has come back from abroad stayed ice cool to land the winner in the second minute of injury.
It looked bleak for 14 man MacCumhaills, who los Justin McGee to a straight red card midway through the second half, when they trailed by a point in the 58th minute but the inevitable Henderson leveled maters just before his late epic winner.
This was a real ding dong affair from the off as St Eunan raced into a 0-2 to 0-0 lead through early points from dual star Sean McVeigh before the lethal Henderson struck for Sean MacCumhaills goal after just seven minutes.
The remainder of the saw Henderson and Aaron McCauley swop points with Letterkenny marksmen Colm Breathnach and Eugene Organ.
The winners led by 1-6 to 0-4 at the break but the Letterkenny lads steamed ahead in the third quarter.
A well struck goal from Organ and a brace of points from Breathnach leveled matters at 1-6 apiece by the 37th minute.
Letterkenny then edged clearby three points and led by 1-9 to 1-6 as the half developed into a shoot out between Henderson and Breathnach.
But despite losing McGee MacCumhaills kept battling away to set up a truly frenetic finish.
Colm Breathnach put Letterkenny ahead by 1-12 to 1-11 before those crucial late strikes from the bang in form Henderson.