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Monaghan minors through to Ulster final

June 24th, 2012

Electric Ireland Ulster Minor Football Championship Semi-Final

Monaghan 0-11 Down 0-8                            24/6/12                       



Monaghan booked their place in the Ulster MFC Final for the first time since 2008 with a hard-earned win over Down at the Athletic Grounds in Armagh on Sunday. Monaghan trailed narrowly for large parts of the match, but they showed real character to hit five unanswered points in the final 18 minutes to advance. Ryan Wylie, Ryan McAnespie, David McAlister, Shaun Buckley and Pádraic Keenan led the way for Monaghan, while Tom Grimley, Daniel McCarthy and Aaron McDonald led Down’s challenge.

Donal McKeever opened the scoring for Down in the fifth minute after a one-two with Tom Grimley, before Daniel McCarthy doubled their lead. Monaghan eventually got off the mark on 11 minutes through David McAlister and although Conor McGrady hit back for Down, Fergal McGeough linked up with Mark Magee to keep Monaghan within one. Conor McCarthy equalised from a 30-metre free after a foul on McGeough and Monaghan missed a couple of chances to take the lead, before Ronan McAlinden regained the lead for Down from a free. McGrady punished a poor pass in the Monaghan defence to put two between them once again, although Pádraic Keenan landed a 25-metre free from the left after a foul on James McElroy to reduce the gap to a point at half-time: Down 0-5 Monaghan 0-4.

It took Monaghan barely 15 seconds to equalise after the restart through McAlister, but Down quickly replied with a fisted effort by Daniel McCarthy, who doubled their lead five minutes later with his third point. McAlister linked up with sub Conor Lavelle to get one back for Monaghan and although Joe McDermott responded almost immediately, Ryan Wylie got forward to kick an inspirational score for the Farney men, who drew level courtesy of a superb outside-of-the-boot effort by James McElroy. Ryan McAnespie added a fine score to edge Monaghan ahead for the first time and they went two up in injury-time when Conor McCarthy converted a 25-metre free for a foul on McElroy. In the last attack, Monaghan hit their insurance score when a Keenan free broke for sub Dessie Ward, who sent over a well-taken shot with his first touch of the ball. Monaghan will now play either Tyrone or Derry in the Ulster MFC Final on July 22.



Monaghan: C Forde; R Wylie (0-1), M Magee, F Malone; S Buckley, S Conlon, B Hanratty; B Greenan, J McElroy (0-1); R McAnespie (0-1), C McCarthy (0-2f), P Keenan (Capt., 0-1f); A Treanor, F McGeough (0-1), D McAlister (0-3).

Subs: C Hughes for Hanratty (24 mins), C Lavelle for McGeough (39), D McElroy for Conlon (55), D Ward (0-1) for McAlister (65).


Down: R Burns; R Wells, A Doherty, M O’Hare; D McKeever (0-1), A McDonald, J McDermott (0-1); D Doyle, D McCarthy (0-3); C Gallagher, S McGonigle, R McAlinden (Capt., 0-1f); C McGrady (0-2), T Grimley, J Haughey.

Subs: D McAleenan for Haughey (39), D McKeown for McAlinden (inj., 52)


Referee: S McLaughlin (Donegal).

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