Dean Maguirc College booked its place in the final of The Corn Colmcille competition (U13.5) by beating Abbey Vocational School on Friday past at Irvinestown’s Bawnacre centre. Having topped the qualifying group with victories over St. Louis’ Ballymena, St. Ciaran’s Ballygawley and St Joseph’s Donaghmore, The Dean entered the semi final on Friday as slight favourites over its Donegal counterparts.
Weather conditions were not ideal as the players took to the pitch but both teams adapted well to the wet ball and produced high quality football from the outset. It was Abbey who impressed most in the early exchanges and got the first two scores on the board. The Dean duly upped the tenacity in their tackling and this paid great dividends with them scoring a goal on the counter attack through ace marksman Brayden McNally. This team prides itself on gaining turnovers and they did this regularly during an excellent first half. Great pressure was applied to the Abbey kickout and The Dean were rewarded with scores from Marcus Conway and Mark Harte. From then on goals were on the mind of the attackers and they went on to score three from Pauric Broderick, Finbar Donaghy and Brayden McNally again. Abbey kept themselves in the game by scoring a goal after some great work from their half back line. At the half time break Dean Maguirc College were seven points in the ascendancy with a score line of 4.3 to 1.5.
The second half was a more cautious affair with The Dean seemingly more determined to hold on to the lead rather than extend it. They suffered for this in conceding two goals to Abbey, one of which was a penalty. Some substitutions brought fresh impetus to The Dean’s attack and one in particular, Matthew Meenagh, can count himself very unlucky to have had his goal disallowed. A goal each for Marcus Conway and Brayden McNally, alongside to a point from midfielder Lochlann Gillen paved the way for a nine point victory for Dean Maguirc winning by 6.6 to 3.6. They go on to play another Donegal school, St. Eunan’s Letterkenny, in the final which is due to take place on April the 20th, after the Easter holidays.