Monaghan exit Ulster MFL
Ulster Minor Football League Group A
Cavan 1-15 Monaghan 1-6 9/4/11
Monaghan missed out on a place in the semi-finals of the Ulster Minor Football League after they fell to a disappointing defeat against Cavan at Breffni Park on Saturday. Cavan were completely in control in the first half, with the wind at their backs, as they raced into a 12-point lead, which Monaghan never looked like overcoming. Peter Graham, Conor Moynagh, Joe Dillon, Killian Clarke and Dara McVeety played key roles for Cavan, who hit an impressive 1-13 from play. Adam Treanor, Johnny McGuigan and Mel Boyce were best on the day for Monaghan.
Cian McEnroe opened the scoring with a point from play, followed by a point from a 30-metre free for a foul on Liam Buchanan. Gary Tubman added a third point after a pass from Peter Graham, who sent over a good score of his own after he had been well-placed by Conor Moynagh. Cavan opened up a seven-point lead on 13 minutes when Joe Dillon won a Monaghan kick-out and raced through to drill a low shot into the net. Points from play by Tubman and Graham, either side of a McEnroe free, opened up a ten-point gap, before Dillon swung over a fine score from 45 metres out. A Dara McVeety point continued Cavan’s dominance, before Monaghan finally got off the mark in the 25th minute when Thomas Kerr tapped over from a 13-metre free after Fergal McGeough had been fouled off the ball. Dillon almost had a second goal in the 27th minute, but his shot was blocked by Fergal Malone. The resulting ’45 saw Graham set up McVeety for his second point, before Michael Argue became the fifth Cavan forward to score in the opening half. Good approach play by Johnny McGuigan and McGeough created a goal chance for Michael Galligan just before the half-time whistle, but his effort went over the bar and Monaghan trailed by 1-11 to 0-2 at the interval.
Galligan got the first point of the second half from a close-range free after a foul on Conor Boyle and Adam Treanor sent another over after Mel Boyce had won a high centre from Boyle, but Argue linked up with Conor Finnegan to kick Cavan’s first point of the half, 15 minutes in. Monaghan got their first goal in their three games with seven minutes left when Boyce got on the end of a high ball from Kerr and laid it off for Treanor to fire home. Cavan sub Andrew Graham became his side’s seventh scorer after a Dillon goal-attempt had been saved, before Kerr curled over a fine left-footed point from a tight angle. Points by Dillon and Peter Graham restored Cavan’s ten-point lead, before Treanor fired a shot over the bar late on to finish off the scoring. Both Monaghan and Cavan now enter the shield competition, with Monaghan playing Tyrone next Saturday.
Cavan: B O’Mara; B Sankey, K Clarke, C Brady; G Smith, C Moynagh, P Carolan; P Graham (0-3), L Buchanan; M Argue (0-2), J Dillon (1-2), G Tubman (0-2); D McVeety (0-2), C McEnroe (0-3, 2f), C Finnegan.
Subs: D Monaghan for Buchanan (42 mins), A Graham (0-1) for McVeety (46), V Coyle for Tubman (51), S McKiernan for McEnroe (53), F Reilly for Moynagh (55).
Monaghan: N McShane; C Cromwell, J McGuigan, F Malone; B Greenan, C Boyle, L Savage; P McKenna, P Finnegan; M Galligan (0-2, 1f), M Boyce, G Graham; T Kerr (0-2, 1f), F McGeough, A Treanor (1-2).
Subs: N Greenan for Graham (19), K Rudden for McGeough (40), L Smyth for Galligan, D Courtney for Savage (both 44), R McKenna for Malone (50).
Referee: F Cleary (Fermanagh).