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In The Irish News - Apr 13 1998: Ciaran McCabe settles dour Dr McKenna Cup battle

Down's winning goal scorer Ciaran McCabe (centre)
The Irish News Archive

DOWN’S Dr McKenna Cup semi-final replay victory (3-8 to 0-14) over Tyrone yesterday provided little compensation for their National League defeat by Monaghan.

Nor will it have given them any significant insight into the worth of their Ulster Championship opponents.

The sides meet in the Anglo-Celt Cup opener next month, but neither scored a psychological victory in a dour struggle watched by just a few hundred supporters at Healy park, Omagh.

A dramatic finish, climaxed by a winning goal from substitute Ciaran McCabe, added some late excitement, but in truth few among the crowd would have had the appetite for extra time.

Tyrone made a whirlwind start, going ahead by 0-8 to 0-1 with points from Matt McGleenan, Gerard Cavlan and Ciaran Loughran putting them firmly in control.

But Down hit back with a goal from a penalty by Shane Mulholland, and Aidan Quinn added a second shortly before half-time to level the scores at 0-9 to 2-3. It was score for score in a tight second half, Mickey Linden replying to Cavlan’s accurate efforts.

And just when the game looked destined for 30 minutes of injury time, substitute Ciaran McCabe popped up with a winning goal four minutes before the end.

Tyrone: F McConnell, P Devlin, F Logan, F Devlin, B Meenan, P Canavan, S McLaughlin, C Holmes, D McElroy, A Cush, G Cavlan, P McLaughlin, F Coyle M McGleenan, C Loughran.

Subs: S McCarron for McConnell, B Dooher for Canavan, C McBride for Coyle.

Down: P Travers, F Caulfield, C Deegan, A Molloy, M McMurray, E McMahon, S Poland, S McMahon, G Colgan, G McMahon, S Mulholland, A Quinn, G Deegan, M Linden, S Ward.

Subs: C McCabe

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TYRONE reached their second successive All-Ireland Vocational Schools (U18) final when they overcame hot favourites Cork 0-19 to 0-16 after extra-time in a scintillating semi-final in Mountmellick.

But it took them extra time before they eventually got the better of the Munster champions.

The final quarter in normal time was played in a blizzard. In extra time as players began to feel the conditions and several fell down with cramp it was pleasing to see their opponents rushing to help them.

There was a slight delay before the start when at the appointed time of 2pm no referee had arrived.

But at 2.10pm Dublin whistler Joe Woods arrived and the game got under way.

The Tyrone defence was superb with full-back Fran Loughran, centre half Brian O’Neill and Martin McCarron being most prominent.

Eoin Mulligan was in brilliant form at midfield and proved to be the rallying force in extra time.

However, the star of the side was left-half forward Stephen Donnelly. He played as a third midfielder, was the star forward on view and even found time to help out his defence.

Enda McGinley and Darren O’Hanlon also worked hard.

Tyrone: P Ward, M McCarron, F Loughran, J Devine, G Devlin, B O’Neill, P O’Neill, E Mulligan (0-2), A O’Connor, N Loughran, D O’Hanlon, S Donnelly (0-8), A Quinn, E McGinley (0-3), J P Kane (0-1).

Subs: R O’Neill (0-2) for N Loughran, G Cooney (0-3) for A Quinn.

Cork: P O’Regan, S Casey, P Leary, T Anglin, C O’Tuame (0-1), E Wiseman, N Buckley, D Duane, P Sexton, I Gardner (0- 2), N O’Callaghan (0-1), C O’Donovan (0- 9), A Harrington, O O’Neill (0-1), A Tobin (0-1).

Subs: M O’Brien (0-1) for A Tobin, Tommy O’Kelly for D Duane.

Referee: J Woods (Dublin)

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HAD the dictating wind with its telling contribution to Saturday’s hurling at Casement Park, been left aside, it would still have proved difficult for Antrim players to match the strength and class of their Galway visitors, winners on a 2-19 to 1-12 scoreline.

A rampant Galway produced seven unanswered points in the opening 12 minutes. Any thoughts of a second half revival from the home county were soon quelled after the interval during which Galway led 1-15 to 1-4.

Points from Jarlath Elliot (2) and Paul McKillen early in the second half, were cancelled out as Francis Forde and man of the match Dara Cohen maintained Galway’s lead before Ollie Fahy beat Shane Elliot to compliment Joe Rabbitte’s first half goal.

Fahy’s goal, adding to his tally of three points, effectively ended Antrim’s aspirations of an upset.

Galway, now with four points in Division 1A are seemingly safe in that arena next season.

Antrim are playing for survival in the division and their Round Four trip to Limerick on Sunday dosen’t provide comfort thoughts.

Antrim: S Elliot, S McMullan, E Colgan, C McCambridge, R Donnelly, Gary O’Kane, C Kelly (0-1), P McKillen (0-1), M Molloy, J Carson (0-1), C McGuckian (0-1), S P McKillop, A Elliot (1- 1), J O’Neill, J Elliot (0-5)

Subs: Gregory O’Kane (0-2) for J O’Neill (45mins) L Richmond for J Carson.

Galway: R Burke, F Gantley, B Feeney, L Hodgins, M Donoghue (0-1), N Shaughnessy, P Hardiman, V Maher, L Burke (0-1), A Kerins (0-2), C Moore (0-1), F Forde (0-3), Dara Coen (0-6), J Rabbitte (1-0), O Fahy (1-3)

Subs: M Coleman for N Shaughnessy (56mins), J Campbell for C Moore (48mins)

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