Wednesday 24 May 2017

Kilcoo stroll to fifth Down title in a row

The Magpies dominated from start to finish in Páirc Esler, with two goals in a three-minute spell in the first half. Photo: Sportsfile
The Magpies dominated from start to finish in Páirc Esler, with two goals in a three-minute spell in the first half. Photo: Sportsfile

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

Kilcoo hammered Clonduff to make it five Down senior football titles in a row yesterday.

Kilcoo 3-11 Clonduff 0-9

The Magpies dominated from start to finish in Páirc Esler, with two goals in a three-minute spell in the first half giving them an early platform which they never relinquished. Martin Devlin scored three first-half points and an 18th-minute goal from Aaron Morgan, after a defensive blunder by Clonduff from a sideline free, was quickly followed by another major from Daryll Branagan.

Managed by Paul McIver, the son of former Derry and Donegal manager Brian, Kilcoo led by 2-8 to 0-1 at the break. Barry O’Hagan scored Clonduff’s sole first-half point in the sixth minute. Clonduff were taken apart in midfield but Packie O’Hagan ended a 28-minute scoring drought with an early second-half score.

It sparked a mini revival for the underdogs, who hit four of the first five points after the break from Barry O’Hagan and two Stephen McConville frees. Sub Eugene Branagan, who replaced his brother and former Down defender Aidan in the first half, pointed for Kilcoo and once Ceilum Doherty drilled home their third goal after 40 minutes, it was game over.

Eugene Branagan was red-carded late on for Kilcoo who cruised to a fifth SFC title in a row. Clonduff ‘won’ the second half by 0-8 to 1-3 with Barry O’Hagan and McConville scoring all but one of their points but Kilcoo had 11 players on the scoresheet in an emphatic victory.

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