Slaughtneil remain on course for ninth straight Derry title with win semi-final win over Lavey
Leadon Timber Frame Derry SHC semi-final: Slaughtneil 4-19 Lavey 1-6
SLAUGHTNEIL took another step closer to a ninth successive Derry senior title with a comprehensive win over Lavey on Saturday afternoon.
A goal from ace forward Brendan Rogers after just two minutes set the tone in a game they led from start to finish.
There was a return to action for Paul McNeill in defence after a lengthy spell out with injury. Lavey missed the scoring exploits of Fintan Bradley and defender James Crawford, but the athleticism and ability to maximise the spaces had Slaughtneil at level Johnny McGarvey’s side couldn’t reach.
Oran Downey played as a spare midfielder, but not back far enough to cut out the central channel in the Slaughtneil attack. It allowed Karl McKaigue to sit back in the pocket in front of McNeill and Shane McGuigan.
From the moment Chrissy McKaigue cut through for the first of his seven points from play, there was an urgency about Slaughtneil.
The movement of the champions’ attack pulled Lavey’s defenders out of shape. The first goal was the perfect example. Jerome McGuigan’s diagonal ball, that looked like it was intended for Sé McGuigan, had enough of an angle to find the path of Brendan Rogers who powered his shot to the net.
By the ninth minute, the Emmet’s found the net again. It was Rogers again on the end of a move involving Sé and Mark McGuigan.
Lavey got a first point from midfielder Ciaran Hendry, but it was Slaughtneil who were 2-6 to 0-1 ahead by the first water break.
Brian Cassidy added a third goal in the 25th minute when he got on the end of a Sé McGuigan cross in a move started by Paul McNeill and Oisin O’Doherty in defence.
Ryan Mulholland and Ryan McGill fired over two fine scores for Lavey, but they were forced to shoot from outside the danger zone by a defence that didn’t concede a scoreable free all afternoon.
Leading 3-10 to 0-4 at the break, two McKaigue points extended their lead. Lavey did have a goal chance, but Oisin O’Doherty denied Ryan Mulholland before McNeill scooped the rebound off the line.
At the other end, Sé McGuigan hit a fourth Slaughtneil goal to make the score 4-12 to 0-5 after 37 minutes to put the game beyond any doubt.
Sam Dodds scored two Lavey points and turned in their goal late on after a Jack Shaw pass across the face of goal, but it was a mere consolation score.
Slaughtneil: O O'Doherty; Shane McGuigan, P McNeill; K McKaigue; Sean Cassidy, C McKenna, M McGrath; G Bradley, C McKaigue (0-7); M McGuigan (0-2), C O'Doherty (0-5 frees), B Rogers (2-0); J McGuigan (0-1), Sé McGuigan (1-1), B Cassidy (1-1)
Subs: J Cassidy (0-1) for G Bradley (43), M McEldowney for M McGrath (49), Shea Cassidy (0-1) for J McGuigan (49), P Burke for Sé McGuigan (51)
Yellow card: G Bradley (40)
Lavey: M Taggart; S McGill, B Laverty, D McPeake; E McGill, C Dillon, A Toner (0-1); C Hendry (0-1), O Downey, D O'Neill; R McGill (0-1), S Dodds (1-2), L Murphy; R Farren, R Mulholland (0-1)
Subs: D Shaw for S McGill (h-t), Jack Shaw for O Downey (40), C Collins for A Toner (46) O Waldron for R Farren (46), S Toner for E McGill (57)
Yellow cards: C Hendry (28), D McPeake (34), D O'Neill (40), E McGill (45)
Referee: O Elliott (All Saints)