Cathal McGettigan scored 1-5 for Milford against Burt
Milford saved their senior championship status with a workmanlike performance and an eight point win over Burt in O’Donnell Park on Saturday afternoon.
Milford . . . 2-9
Burt . . . 0-7
Two second half goals from Kane Barrett and Cathal McGettigan paved the way for the win and made it a comfortable second period for the Milford supporters in the O'Donnell Park stand.
McGettigan once again underlined his importance to Milford with a goal and five points and with only two of the points from frees.
The winners were the better balanced and polished side.
They were three in front at half-time having played with a stiff breeze at their backs. Cathal McGettigan kicked three of the Milford points with Darragh Black, Kane Barrett, Gary Merritt and Luke Barrett chipping in with points for the sky blues.
Joe Boyle scored three of Burt’s points, one of them a massive Maurice Fitzgerald style effort from a sideline ball close to the endline.
Daire Grant kicked the other Burt point.
Milford, who went into the championship marked down as one of the potential quarter-finalists, got off to a flying start. Darragh Black kicked their opening point on 12 seconds and Kane Barrett had a glorious chance of a goal but was denied by a brilliant save from Calvin Gallagher in the Burt goals.
This was one of three good goal chances Milford had in the first half. The others fell to Gary Merritt in the middle of the half when he got clear on the end of a sweeping move but pulled his shot wide of a gaping goal.
And the other fell to Cathal McGettigan who just flicked wide with Calvin Gallagher off his line.
The sides were level twice in the opening quarter before Cathal McGettigan put two between the sides for the first time with a little under 20 minutes on the clock.
But Burt stayed in touch, thanks to the immaculate kicking from Joe Boyle, including a monster from the sideline into the wind.
And the margin remained two before Luke Barrett found space to send Milford in 0-7 to 0-4 in front at half-time.
And Milford made sure early in the second period thanks to a Caolan McGettigan point and a Kane Barrett goal.
Barrett made no mistake on 34 minutes when through one on one with Calvin Gallagher for a 1-8 to 0-4 lead.
And it was game set and match when Darragh Black sent Cathal McGettigan in for goal number two and a 2-8 to 0-4 Milford.
That was on 46 minutes and though the game was most definitely over as contest, in true Burt spirit the Inishowen men battled to the finish. Joe Boyle converted two close in frees and Daire Grant knocked over from long range. Mickey McCann also drew a good save from Caolan McGettigan.
MILFORD: Caolan McGettigan; Ronan Docherty, Sean Black, Conor McNulty; Gary Merritt (0-1), Paddy Peoples, David Curley; Joey Cullen, Luke Barrett (0-2); Cathal McGettigan (1-5, 2f), Christopher Barrett, Kyle Black; Darragh Black (0-1), Kane Barrett (1-1,1f), Tony McNamee.
Subs: Ryan McMahon for K Black 45; James Doyle for C McNulty 54; Kieran Sheridan for Tony McNamee; Peter Curran for C Barrett 57.
BURT: Calvin Gallagher; Michael Doherty, Stephen O’Donnell, Michael McHugh; Sean McHugh, Ciaran Finn, Darren Gallagher; Stephen Gillespie, Ronan McDermott; Daire Grant (0-2), Tom Doherty, Joe Boyle(0-4, 3f); Mickey McCann, Ciaran Dowds, Conor Harkin.
Subs: Martin Donaghy for C Finn 37; Kevin Glynn for Michael McHugh 45; Sean O’Donnell for S Gillespie 52;
REFEREE: Michael McShane (Kilcar).