Wolfe Tones 1-15 Donegal 0-15
Wolfe Tones booked their place in the Senior Football Championship play-offs with a narrow victory over Donegal in an absorbing encounter.
Tones had the better of the opening half, and they had the opportunity to open up a four-point lead when they were awarded a penalty after Luke Flynn was hauled down as he prepared to shoot.
|Wolfe Tones pulled off a win to ensure a playoff place.|
However, Marty Clarke saw his penalty saved by Donegal goalkeeper Eamon McCarney, and Tones were punished for their miss as Donegal worked the ball down the field for Ciaran Thompson to land a point and level the score at 0-2 apiece.
Tones continued to dominate, and by the time Michael Argue curled over a beautiful point the Dorchester men were four points to the good. It was tit-for-that from there until the break, and another over from Argue ensured Tones enjoyed the half-time lead, 0-10 to 0-07.
The close nature of the game continued upon the restart with Ryan Murray and Argue both scoring points for Donegal and Tones, respectively, inside the opening 60 seconds.
Argue was having an exceptional game at midfield for Tones, and an impressive point by him from over 40 metres out gave Tones a four-point lead.
Donegal enjoyed a purple patch in the middle period of the second half and three points from Stephen Griffin (two frees) left just the minimum between the teams with 15 minutes remaining, 0-13 to 0-12.
Tones were in desperate need of a point to get them back on track, and Gary Brilly obliged with a fine effort off his right boot. And Charles McCarthy followed that up to put the Tones three ahead with just under ten minutes remaining.
A Griffin free cut Donegal’s deficit to two, and then Murray split the posts to leave the game delicately poised heading into the last five minutes.
Donegal equalised in the 58th minute when Thompson held his nerve to find the target, but Tones responded brilliantly as they got the ball to full-forward McCarthy who blasted to the net from close range.
Tones had Cillian Clarke sent off for a second yellow card late on, and Donegal had a couple of close-range frees in stoppage time. However, the Tir Chonaill men just couldn’t breach the Tones defence, and, in truth, the Banshee Boys were worthy of the victory.
Wolfe Tones: C Hynes, K Clarke, D McConnon, S Higgins, K Cleere, G Scanlon, M Argue, L Flynn, M O’Brien, G Brilly, D McVeery, M Farrell, C McCarthy.
Donegal: E McCarney, M Canny, C McCarron, S Doherty, C Healy, J O’Connor, M Smyth, S McDonagh, R Murray, C Thompson, D McLaughlin, S Griffin, S Boyle.
By Seamus Leonard