Milford United joined Keadue Rovers in the Brian McCormick Cup final after their expected win over Convoy Arsenal at Ballyare on Saturday evening.
In the Premier Division Donegal Town pulled away from the relegation area with an away win over Glenea United, who are now in trouble. In Division One, Cranford United took a giant step towards promotion by defeating their nearest rivals, Lifford Celtic.
Brian Mc Cormick Cup Semi-Final
Milford United 3
Convoy Arsenal 0
Milford United defeated Convoy Arsenal to join Keadue Rovers in the 2019 Final of the Brian Mc Cormick Cup.
The first half was not very eventful as far as talking points were concerned, Convoy’s bar thumping strike the nearest we had to a goal, until Milford took the lead just before the break.
Rory O’ Donnell got the all-important lead goal when he met a corner on the volley and left Matthew Gallagher with no chance in the Convoy net.
This winded Convoy but didn’t deflate their challenge. They went about redressing the balance on the re-start but didn’t find a way through.
Milford doubled their advantage on 70 minutes when Gary Merritt scored. Merritt had been given little room to cause havoc in the first half by the well drilled Arsenal rearguard. Darragh Black looked dangerous when attacking along the left wing and cutting into the box.
Kyle Black got the third goal on 78 minutes to confirm Milford’s passage to the May day decider.
Brian Mc Cormick Sports Premier Division
Keadue Rovers 3
Kildrum Tigers 1
Keadue Rovers had a crucial win over Kildrum Tigers at Central Park on in their bid to stay in the Premier Division of the Donegal League.
It was a good day for football, despite a stiff breeze. The visitors started the brighter and forced several corners in the first ten minutes and had Keadue on the back foot. It wasn’t until after ten minutes that the home team fashioned a chance when a free kick, struck by Cory Gallagher, hit the post. On twenty-seven minutes, despite feeding off less possession, Keadue took the lead when David Ward’s ball through to Shaun Yank Boyle was met with a fine left foot volley.
Three minutes later Shaun Yank Boyle again went close when his header from a corner hit the post. Kildrum again had a good spell around the thirty-five-minute mark forcing some set pieces in dangerous places. On forty-two minutes some excellent passing from Keadue led to Shaun Yank Boyle’s fine strike which was brilliantly saved by Rory Carr in the Kildrum nets to leave it 1-0 at the break.
On 53 minutes Kildrum drew level when a free kick just outside the Keadue box was adjudged to have been handled and Kildrum were awarded a penalty which William Lynch dispatched well. A good response followed from Keadue with Cory Gallagher going close and Calum Boyle tackled inside the box just before getting his effort away.
David Ward then had a shot saved and straight after that Cory Gallagher fired just over the bar. The home side were well in control but after seventy minutes it became a bit scrappy, which seemed to suit the visitors. Jack Boyle shot wide for Keadue on seventy-four minutes but a minute later Keadue made the breakthrough. Following a free kick which was floated in Cory Gallagher got on the end of it to head home at the far post.
Five minutes later the home side put the seal on things when Adam Neely’s free kick went under the keeper for number three.
Best for Kildrum were Justin Mc Gee, Dominic Keys and Glen Bovaird, while best for Keadue were Shaun Yank Boyle, Chris Greene, Cory Gallagher and David Ward. Referee: Andrew Mullin.
Glenea United 1
Donegal Town 2
Both teams went into this game needing a win to stay clear of the relegation zone and it was Donegal Town who came out on top.
Neither team were taking any risks in the first 20 minutes, Kevin Mc Fadden went closest for Glenea with a 30-yard shot and Ben Sweeney for Donegal, with the keepers coming to the rescue on both occasions. Donegal broke the deadlock in the 22nd minute with a well worked move ending with Ben Sweeney breaking through the Glenea defence and slotting to the corner. Glenea levelled the score on the 32nd minute with Martin Maguire scoring from 30 yards.
Donegal started the 2nd half the stronger with David Graham being a constant threat and he was finally rewarded on the 60th minute when Donegal hit on the counter attack and Graham was at the back post to slot home. Both teams had half chances in the last 10 minutes but neither could score again and Donegal Town left with the 3 points.
Good team performances. Referee: Joe Mc Hugh.
Temple Domestic Appliances Division One
Cranford United 2
Lifford Celtic 1
On a fine day in Cranford Park, Cranford kept their title hopes alive but especially their promotion hopes with this win.
They started brightly with Danny Mc Bride coming close after a fine cross from the ever-reliable Shane McTeague.
Lifford broke the deadlock with Paul Carlin capitalising on a mix-up in the Cranford defence. Cranford upped their game in the second half and got their reward when Kevin "Gooch" Doherty, working tirelessly as ever, squared the ball to David O' Donnell who coolly dispatched from 12 yards.
With a draw suiting the visitors more, Cranford had to push and with five minutes left Chris Carr got on the end of a long throw from Marty Mc Bride to seal the victory.
Donegal Physiotherapy & Performance Centre Division Two
Copany Rovers 1
Gweedore United 6
Gweedore United travelled to Copany Rovers to record a big win. Goals from Ciaran McFadden (2), Paul Doogan, Steven McFadden and Kyle Doogan did the business.
It promises to be a big day in the division next Sunday as Raphoe are at Curragh and Letterbarrow travel to kerrykeel with both those sides chasing automatic promotion with Letterbarrows fate in their own hands.
Ulster Junior Shield
Milford United Reserves 0
Cockhill Celtic Youths 3
Milford welcomed Cockhill Youths to Moyle View Park and can have no complaints with the result. A very well organised Cockhill side started strong but couldn’t find the back of the net until the 45th minute. A ball down the channel that should have been cut out found the Cockhill winger who squared it across the six yard box to leave Michael Noone a simple finish to make it 1-0 at halftime.
Milford were hoping for a quick start to the second half but it was Cockhill who were out of the traps fastest. Straight from kick-off they worked it out wide and a ball to the back post found Darragh Mc Dermott unmarked to make it 2-0.
With Milford pushing for a goal there were spaces at the back that Cockhill exploited. They were awarded a penalty on the hour mark. A good save by Milford’s Barry Gallagher from Shaun Donaghey gave Milford hope. Milford were caught on the break ten minutes later however with Mark Mc Daid rounding the keeper to make it 3-0 and send Cockhill to the final.
Glencar Inn Saturday Division One
Glenea United Reserves 0
Strand Rovers 2
It was Strand that came out on top of this derby to stay clear at the top. The away side started the brightest but were unable to create any clear-cut chances. As the half progressed Glenea came more into the game but like Strand were unable to create a chance. Strand took the lead on 20 minutes when Conor Greene's scuffed free-kick fell to Conor O' Donnell and he drilled home from beside the penalty spot.
In the second half Strand pushed for a second goal but were denied by a combination of post, good defending. some good saves and poor finishing. Glenea tried hard for an equaliser but their best was Gerard Maguire's blocked effort.
Strand got their second goal on 78 minutes when Conor Greene’s effort was saved by Thomas Ferry but Shaun Mc Gee was on hand to tap in the rebound. Best for Glenea was Neil Mc Geever, while Shane O' Donnell impressed for Strand.
Oldtown Celtic 5
Castlefin Celtic Reserves 1
The match was played in great conditions in Rathmullan. Oldtown started brightly and took the lead when stand-in striker Tommy McLaughlin, who is normally the goalkeeper, fired in a fine effort from the edge of the area.
Oldtown then doubled their advantage and again Tommy Mc Laughlin was the scorer controlling a through ball before turning his man and firing into the top corner. Paddy Mc Laughlin then added a fine individual effort when beating two men and hammering home.
Tommy Mc Laughlin completed his hat-trick from a well executed free-kick with manoeuvre with Joe Mc Carron. Castlefin battled well but the Oldtown defence and keeper Paul Gormley were up to the challenge. Castlefin came out more organised in the second half and looked dangerous on the break before Paddy Mc Laughlin fired in another when he was put through on goal. Castlefin got a late consolation from the penalty spot.