Setanta hurlers are through to an Ulster Junior Club championship final
Hail glorious Setanta who strode into an Ulster Junior club final after a superb and thoroughly deserved victory over a fancied Gort na Mona side in Owenbeg, Dungiven, yesterday.
Setanta . . . 1-20
Gort na Mona (Antrim). . . 1-6
After conceding a goal direct from a free near the side line in the 5th minute to fall 1-0 to 0-2 behind Setanta recovered superbly to take a 0-10 to 1-3 lead to the break.
The Donegal champions then conceded two points on the restart.
But from the 35th minute, an outstanding defensive display restricted a fancied Antrim side to just a single point as they stormed to an utterly convincing 14-point victory.
All over the park, Setanta were dominant in the second half, with Simon McMenamin and Mark Bonner immense in central defence, corner backs Brendan Tourish and Mark Callaghan utterly resolute in the last line.
With Danny Cullen in control at midfield for most of the game, Colm Melaugh, Declan Coulter and Kevin Campbell made hay up front against an overrun Gort na Móna rear guard.
Playing with wind advantage at Celtic Park Setanta had early points from Kevin Campbell and Declan Coulter but they were rocked in the 6thminute when Patrick McCaffrey sent the sliothar high to the goalmouth from a free and it somehow ended in the net.
However, after McCaffrey pointed the first of his three frees in this half, that was the signal for a Setanta scoring onslaught as Melaugh (2), Cullen (2), Coulter (3 frees) and Campbell (2) plundered points at will for a 0-10 to 1-3 interval lead.
Gort na Móna threatened a resurgence with a Martin Ward point inside ten seconds and another from Darren Boyd. But Setanta recovered immediately as they restricted the Antrim side to a point for the rest of the game.
Points from Melaugh, Coulter and Campbell inside eight minutes put them in control and the game was ended as a contest, 1-13 to 1-5 when Coulter was on hand to drill the sliothar to the net when Campbell crossed from the left.
Setanta picked off scores at will to qualify for a final meeting with Derry’s Na Magha.
SETANTA: G McGettigan; B Tourish, S McMenamin, M Callaghan; S Anderson, M Bonner, J McBride; R Kee, D Cullen 0-2; B Lafferty 0-2, C Melaugh 0-4, M Kane; N Cleary, D Coulter 1-7, 5f, , K Campbell 0-5, 2f, 1 ‘65’. Subs: J Carlin for B Tourish 22m, Rev 25m; J Carlin for D Coulter 54m; S Flynn for K Campbell 59m; D Rowan for J McBride 59m
GORT NA MONA: C McCann; C Devlin, G McKenna, C Connelly; P McHugh, M Rea, G Doyle; P McCaffrey 1-3 f, D Hughes; S Doyle 0-1, M Ward 0-1, T McGoran 0-1; T McCaffrey, P Fryers, D Boyd. Subs: N Gibson for G Doyle 44; N Healy for T McCaffrey 55; K Valliday for T McGoran 59m;
REFEREE Colin Murray, Down.