NFL Div 2: Derry 0-14 Clare 0-4
It was a walk in the park for Derry as they eased their way to a sixth win and book their spot in Division One next season.
Clare won the toss and played against the wind, but the home side were nine points clear by the interval and it took 42 minutes for Pearse Lillis to land the first score for Colm Collins’ side.
The difference was in how Derry moved the ball on the turnover. Conor McCluskey and Ethan Doherty were always pouring forward. Brendan Rogers was also heavily involved and set up Shane McGuigan for his first score of the game.
McCluskey and Ethan Doherty summed up the first half with a swift breakaway before skipper Conor Glass kicked Derry 0-3 to 0-0 ahead after 13 minutes.
Derry poured everybody forward on Clare’s kick-outs, with McKinless passing to Doherty to slot over.
Derry’s attacking game was relentless. With every turnover, they poured forward, with Paul Cassidy curling over a second, Conor Doherty and McGuigan making it 0-9 to 0-0 at the beak.
The Banner management brought Podge Collins and Cillian Rouine on at half time but it was Derry who hit the first score. A Clare pass skewed wide and when Derry built from Lynch’s short kick-out, Gareth McKinless fisted over the bar.
Collins then hit one of Clare’s six second-half wides before Lynch started another attack where McGuigan was fouled and he slotted over the only free of the game, putting Derry 0-11 to 0-0 ahead.
Derry could have hit the net when Glass plucked a kick-out but Benny Heron’s bullet flew over the bar.
Derry were always able to keep tipping away and stau ten points ahead. A McGuigan right-footed effort stretched it to 11 before McMahon completed the scoring.
SCORERS – Derry: Shane McGuigan 0-5 (1m. 1f), Ethan Doherty 0-3, Conor Glass 0-1, Conor Doherty 0-1, Niall Loughlin 0-1, Paul Cassidy 0-1, Gareth McKinless 0-1, Benny Heron 0-1. Clare: Emmet McMahon 0-2, Dermot Coughlan and Pearse Lillis 0-1 each
DERRY: O Lynch 7, C McKaigue 7, E McEvoy 6 , C McCluskey8 ; P McGrogan 6, C Doherty 6 , G McKinless 7; C Glass 7, B Rogers 7; N Toner 6, Paul Cassidy7 , E Doherty 7; B Heron 6, S McGuigan 7, N Loughlin 6. Subs: Padraig Cassidy 7 for E McEvoy (40), S Downey 6 for C Doherty (56), M Downey 5 for N Loughlin (64), C McGuckian 5 for B Heron (64), N O’Donnell 5 for B Rogers (67). Yellow card: C McKaigue (40)
CLARE: S Ryan 6; M Doherty 6, C Brennan 5, R Lanigan 5; C Russell 5, P Lillis 6, A Sweeney 5; C O’Connor 6, D Bohannon 6; J Malone 6, E Cleary 6, D Coughlan 6; I Ugweru 5, K Sexton 6, E McMahon 7. Subs: P Collins 6 for I Ugweru (HT), C Rouine 5 for A Sweeney (HT), G Cooney 5 for C Russell (43), M Garry 5 for R Lanigan (55), B Rouine 5 for M Doherty (64). Black card: P Collins (50), Yellow cards: C Russell (40), K Sexton (48)
REF: P Faloon (Down)