Tuesday 16 January 2018

Lyng on target as Gaels sail into last four

Cavan Gaels 1-19 Lámh Dhearg 0-10

Paul Graham of Cavan Gaels in action against Pearse Fitzsimons of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Paul Graham of Cavan Gaels in action against Pearse Fitzsimons of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

It was all too easy for Cavan Gaels at Kingspan Breffni as they strolled into the Ulster Club SFC semi-finals.

The winners led from gun to tape and won pulling up despite spurning a handful of gilt-edged goal chances over the hour-plus.

Michael Lyng of Cavan Gaels in action against Michael Herron of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Michael Lyng of Cavan Gaels in action against Michael Herron of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

A point after just 12 seconds from Robert Maloney-Derham opened the floodgates.

Luckily for the Belfast boys, Gaels' duo Martin Dunne and Kevin Meehan had point-blank shots saved by 'keeper John Finucane, while a diving block by Domhnall Nugent denied Andrew Graham and only the crossbar prevented Seanie Johnston from goaling.

At the other end, the Hannahstown-based Antrim champions manufactured one clear-cut goal chance, but Domhnall Nugent fired wide in the 26th minute.

The Antrim men worked to win their game of catch-up, but apart from the tricky Paddy Cunningham, the visitors were punchless in the last third.

Paul Graham of Cavan Gaels in action against Declan Lynch of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Paul Graham of Cavan Gaels in action against Declan Lynch of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

The lights remained largely stuck on red for the Saffrons' representatives and in falling behind by 0-1 to 1-7 after Micheál Lyng's fisted goal (14), their cause became a mountainous one.

The Gaels' superior fitness, mobility and cutting edge ensured that they were at their ease in consolidating their well-heeled 1-11 to 0-5 interval lead.

On a perfect day for football, Lámh Dearg - making their first appearance in the competition since 1992 - carved out one goal chance in the second half, but Gaels' 'keeper Ciaran Flynn won the race for possession ahead of Conor Murray after Patrick Cunningham's shot struck the upright in the 35th minute.

The only surprise was that the runaway victors found the Lámh Dearg net just once as they booked a place against Fermanagh champions Derrgonnelly in the last four.

Barry Fortune of Cavan Gaels in action against Padraig Mervyn of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Barry Fortune of Cavan Gaels in action against Padraig Mervyn of Lamh Dhearg. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

SCORERS - Cavan Gaels: M Dunne 0-6 (1f), S Johnston 0-5 (1f), M Lyng 1-2, R Maloney-Derham 0-3, L Murphy, B Fortune, D Graham 0-1 each. Lámh Dhearg: P Cunningham 0-6 (5f), R Murray 0-3, E McKeown 0-1.

Cavan Gaels - C Flynn; L Fortune, N Murray, K Meehan; D Sexton, B Fortune, L Murphy; P Graham, R Maloney-Derham; N Smith, M Lyng, A Graham; P O'Connor, S Johnston, M Dunne. Subs: D Meehan for A Graham (43), V Coyle for Smith (53), D Graham for Lyng (56), K Donohoe for P Graham (57), S Higgins for K Meehan (58), J Fortune for Sexton (61).

Lámh Dhearg - J Finucane; P Mervyn, A McAulfield, M McGarry; D Lynch, M Herron, B McComb; P Fitzsimons, D Nugent; E McKeown, C Flaherty, C Murray; P Cunningham, R Murray, K Quinn. Subs: C Nolan for McGarry (34), P Larkin for Fitzsimons (BC 42), B Rice for Nugent (46), G Slane for McComb (52), S Tully for McKeown (57).

Ref - Barry Cassidy (Derry).

Eoin McKeown of Lamh Dhearg in action against Levi Murphy of Cavan Gaels. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
Eoin McKeown of Lamh Dhearg in action against Levi Murphy of Cavan Gaels. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

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