Monaghan U16’s exited the Buncrana cup at the semi-final stage to a well drilled Donegal team.
The game was played in dry but windy conditions the 1st half was dominated by Monaghan who played with the strong wind. Monaghan dominance counted for nothing as Donegal scored 1-1 in first half injury time to level the game at half time. Monaghan played some great football in the first half with some great turnovers in the Donegal defence giving us a platform of attack. Monaghan competed well on the Donegal kick-out throughout this period which caused problems early on and gave Darragh Treanor and Alastair Stewart a foothold in midfield. Points from Ben Ryan, Darragh Dempsey, Eoin Duffy, Declan Courtney kept Monaghan in control. Monaghan were leading into injury time by 4 points, Donegal struck for a goal as a high ball in fortuitously dropped in favour of the Donegal number 15 to slot to the net. They then grabbed a point just before the half time whistle to equalise.
Monaghan started the 2nd half brightly and where 2 points up 10 minutes into the half thanks to Darragh Dempsey and Tiarnan Kearns. This proved to be our last score as Donegal clicked into Gear and reeled off 3-4 in the final 20 minutes to record a win on a scoreline of 4-10 to 8 points.
It was disappointment for the Monaghan players and management after the final whistle but by no means did any player let themselves or their county down. They have done great work getting to this position and where unfortunately beaten on the day.
The boys can look forward to the Gerry Reilly tournament in July where they will take on Meath, Louth and Offaly in the group stage.
Thanks to the players for all the work they have put into the season so far and the very best of luck with their clubs.
Team and Panel;
Ciaran O’Reilly, Cian Maguire, David Kerley, Darren McMahon, Kyle Connolly, Eoin Duffy (0-1), Nathan McCaul, Darragh Treanor, Alastair Stewart, Ben Ryan (0-3 3F), Darragh Dempsey (0-3 2F), Shane Slevin, Liam McDonald, Tiarnan Kearns (0-1), Declan Courtney (0-1) (C). Subs Conor Capaldi, Jason Duffy, Killian McKenna, Michael Keenan, Conor Downey, Tristan Moyna, Patrick Keenan, Daire Povall, Jamie McPhillips, Darragh Murray, Eoghan McGnnity