GAA Football

Lowe aiming high as Stewartstown target Ulster junior success

Stewartstown Harps'S Dan Lowe with Conor Browne of Letterkenny Gaels during the Ulster Club Junior Football Championship semi-final match at Owenbeg on Sunday Picture: Margaret McLaughlin
Francis Mooney

DAN Lowe is dreaming of shooting points at the spiritual home of Ulster football when Stewartstown take on Drumlane in the provincial club JFC final.

A 1-6 haul from the Harps ace helped his side to a comfortable semi-final victory over Letterkenny Gaels, setting up a title decider against the Cavan champions at Clones this Saturday.

The Tyrone men were never troubled at Owenbeg, as they outclassed their Donegal opponents on their way to a convincing ten points win.

“Any final you get to is great, but when it's an Ulster final, it's unreal, so we'll prepare well this week and hopefully give it a good shot,” said Lowe.

Whole comfortably on top in the opening half, Stewartstown were unable to stamp their authority on the game in terms of scores, and it wasn't until Lowe netted a 26th minute goal that they managed to put daylight between the sides.

The centre forward punished a defensive error to hit the net for a nine points interval lead.

“We had been working at pushing up, and thankfully we got the turnover, and I managed to fund the net.

“It took us a while to get going and conditions were tough enough with the wind, but when we did get going, we kicked on and got the win.”

Not far behind on the scoring chat with 0-6 was veteran attacker Gareth Devlin, one of a handful of survivors from the team that won the Ulster Club JFC title back in 2004.

Members of that side are still contributing strongly, with Anton Coyle coming off the bench to fire home his side's second goal to complete the rout of Letterkenny, while goalkeeper Greg Kelly pulled off a terrific second half save.

“It's great to have Gareth, he has so much experience, he was there in 2004 when they won it.

“And we have Anton Coyle and Greg Kelly. It's brilliant to have those boys to push is on with all that experience.”

Lowe was a young supporter back in '04, soaking up the atmosphere of a memorable journey that saw the team go all the way to the All-Ireland final, which they lost to Kerry side Finuge.

“I was there watching the boys back then, but hopefully now we will be able to write our own history and take the cup down the road,” he said.

With just a six-day turnaround ahead of the provincial final, there's not much time for fine-tuning, but the Stewartstown players are taking it all in their stride.

Ut's bonus territory, and the pressure is off, with the season's chief objective of promotion already secured.

“That was the goal at the start of the year, to win the League and the Championship, and thankfully we have done that.

“Now we're in bonus territory, and we'll give it a good rattle next weekend.”

GAA Football