Donegal 2-17 Christopher’s 2-9
Christopher’s and Donegal played an entertaining hour of football, with Christopher’s erasing a Donegal lead in the second half, only to see the northerners finish the game strong with a late 1-4 salvo. It was a much improved outing for Christopher’s, and Donegal look like they have an Arsenal of weapons with which they will cause some damage in this year’s championship.
|Donegal's Vinny Coyle was on form versus Christopher's|
Christopher’s first half performance was a far cry from their first outing of the season. A much improved forward line and a defence that worked hard to force Donegal into taking poor shots saw Christopher’s into a 0-6 to 0-3 lead approaching half time. John Campbell (2) and Gavin Gallagher had opened the scoring before Christopher’s put five unanswered over the bar. Center forward, Danny Neville, was the marksman with three, while Cathal Finucane and Kevin Hodgins chipped in with one each.
Christopher’s were looking good. Donegal however, finished strong as they found a way past the Christopher’s defenders, Alan McLaughlin, Campbell, and Eoin O’Connor tied it up before the break.
Donegal opened the second half with three quick points. Christopher’s had just missed a chance when Coyle, Rory Dunleavy and Brian Donnelly put hard earned scores over the bar. John Campbell proved instrumental in a goal as after winning the diagonal ball into his corner, rounded his man and dished to the inrushing Dunleavy, who netted from inside the 21. Less than 10 minutes gone after the restart and Christopher’s had their backs to the wall.
Donegal looked like they had the better of things, attacking in numbers and with Campbell in the corner a dangerous target man. Campbell and Coyle pointed, but Christopher’s answered with two from Cormac Collins before their own target man, Dan Kenneally tipped a high ball from brother Paudie into the net. The target man worked to great effect soon afterwards as another high ball into the box from Neville resulted in a penalty after Kenneally was held, and Collins put the kick away. One point game.
Donegal had too many front line weapons however. With Lee Carr, Neville, Campbell, and Neville firing on all cylinders the Tir Chonaill men dashed Christopher’s hopes with a six point salvo to finish the game. A Lee Carr goal was accompanied by three points, and in the space of a few minutes it was a seven point gap. Donegal looking strong, and getting even better, while some encouragement to be had from Christopher’s.
Donegal: C. Mclaughlin, D. Monaghan, C. Russell, G. Gallagher, D. Green, R. Dunleavy, S. McMenamin, B. Donnelly, V. Coyle, E. O’Connor, A. McLaughlin, J. Campbell, L. Carr. Christopher’s: R. Lavelle, D. Kelliher, P. Allen, B. Deasy, J. Horgan, S. O’Riordan, C. O’Brien, J. Kenneally, C. Finucane, D. Neville, C. Collins, D. Kenneally, K. Hodgins.
By Rory O'Donnell