Dan Gordon hits top form as Loughinisland take down Doohamlet
AIB Ulster Club IFC semi-final: Doohamlet (Monaghan) 1-7 Loughinisland (Down) 4-7
FORMER Down star Dan Gordon was in superb form as he spearheaded Loughinisland’s emphatic victory over Monaghan’s Doohamlet in the last four of the Ulster Club Intermediate Football Championship yesterday.
In difficult conditions at the Athletic Grounds in Armagh, Doohamlet started well and opened the scoring with a point by Barry McGinn after four minutes, with Jamie Walshe putting them two up in the 11th minute.
By this stage Loughinisland had lost Dominic McClements to a black card – but that was as good as it got for the Monaghan intermediate champions.
Seamus O‘Hare got the Down men off the mark with a point from a free in the 15th minute and a minute later they took the lead when Conor Megoran slid the ball home after good work by John McCarthy and Loughinisland led from this point until the finish.
Chances were at a premium for the remainder of the half, with Barry McGinn firing over two points for Doohamlet and Rory Mason converting a free for Loughisland in stoppage time to leave the Down men two ahead at half-time.
Two points from frees by Barry McGinn in the opening two minutes of the second half saw Doohamlet draw level but Loughinisland took a hold on proceedings as they hit Doohamlet with an unanswered 2-4 between the fourth and 18th minutes to effectively wrap up the game.
Rory Mason slotted over the four points, two from frees, and Gordon came charging through to punish Doohamlet for squandering possession as he played a one-two with Aaron McClements before crashing to the Doohamlet net for their second goal 13 minutes after the break.
Substitute Paddy McKenny netted their third five minutes later, with the only other score in normal time a point from a free by Barry McGinn to leave nine points between them entering the final 10 minutes.
In stoppage time Loughinisland plundered a fourth goal, substitute Stefan Mason finishing well after Gordon had carved out the chance and Doohamlet did get a late consolation goal when Barry McGinn crashed in a free.
“Goals kill you,” said Doohamlet manager Trevor Duffy afterwards.
“I would have to admit that on the day they were the better side, but I don’t think the scoreboard reflects the game.
“We were well in it at half-time even though we had missed a few chances but in the end they were just that bit stronger and that bit more clinical when it counted.”
Loughisland manager Jerome Johnston was a happy man, but felt his side only dominated in the second half.
He said: “It was close enough in the first half and they came out and levelled the match shortly after the restart, but once we started moving the ball through the hands we settled more into our normal game and when we got the second goal that was a great boost.
“Doohamlet are a good side and we had to work hard but we scored a couple of goals when the right people showed for the opportunities and we put them away for a result that gives us another big day out.”
Loughinisland: K Gordon; P Digney, P Megoran, R Nixon; D McLaughlin, D Gordon (1-0), C O’Toole; D O’Toole, A McClements; R Mason (0-5, 0-3 frees), S O’Hare (0-2, frees), J Flynn; D McClements, C Megoran (1-0), J McCarthy.
Subs: S Mason (1-0) for S O’Hare (36), C Killen for
D McLaughlin (50), R Stranney for J McCarthy (55), C O’Reilly for D O’Toole (60), M Brannigan for C Megoran (62).
Black card: P McKenny (1-0) for D McClements (9)
Doohamlet: J Casey; J McElroy, M Hughes, K McArdle; D Ward, B McGinn (1-6, 1-3 frees), G King; C Walshe, C McManus; D Connolly, J Duffy, C Marray; P McArdle, J Walshe (0-1), B McBennett.
Subs: O Hughes for C Marray (51), E McManus for K McArdle (51), C Finnegan for P McArdle (54), C Boyland for C McManus (59), S Connolly for D Connolly (59).
Referee: P Hughes (Armagh).