Coleraine defeat Dungiven to claim Dr. Kerlin Cup

Eoghan Rua, Coleraine celebrate after defeating Dungiven to win the Dr. Kerlin Cup at Claudy on Sunday evening.
Eoghan Rua, Coleraine celebrate after defeating Dungiven to win the Dr. Kerlin Cup at Claudy on Sunday evening.

Dr.Kerlin Cup Final

Coleraine 1-13 Dungiven 2-8

Reigning county champions, Coleraine, picked up their first silverware of 2019 with a two point victory over Dungiven in Claudy on Sunday night.

Holders, Slaughtneil were unable to defend their crown after last year’s break from tradition saw clubs from outside north Derry competing for the district crown.

Spearheaded by the influential, Colm McGoldrick, Eoghan Rua showed just why they are county champions with their superior experience and guile coming to the fore in the dying embers of the contest.

It was two points from the full-back line as Liam McGoldrick and Thomas Magee sent over vital scores in the final five minutes of the contest.

Colm McGoldrick opened the scoring straight from the throw-in as his team made their intentions clear before Niall Holly and Feargal Higgins shot wide of the target.

The lead was doubled minutes later as the influential Colm of the McGoldrick dynasty added another.

Dungiven captain, Conor Murphy pointed in response as his team got up and running after 13 minutes of action before being awarded a penalty from the very next play.

Donal McGilligan, who had been influential throughout his comeback, rose to the fore firing the ball into the top left hand corner of the net.

Marty McCloskey added to the Magpies’ lead before three from Colm and one from Ciaran McGoldrick restored the Coleraine lead to the minimum.

Mark Craig restored parity, taking matters into his own hands to break through the Eoghan Rua line before shooting between the sticks.

The Coleraine response was immediate though as the duo of Colm and Ciaran McGoldrick struck once again but Donal McGilligan added a free to cut the deficit to one at the break as his team trailed 1-4 to 0-8.

McGilligan began the second half where he left off the first as he forced his way through a sea of defenders before shooting into the roof of the net and just like that, Dungiven led by two.

That lead would only last two minutes though as Sean Leo McGoldrick’s diagonal ball was punched into the net by brother, Colm, leaving Cahir Hasson helpless on his line.

McGilligan was single-handedly taking the game to Eoghan Rua and he picked two scores either side of further protagonist, Colm’s point as the team’s entered the final 10 minutes deadlocked.

Declan Mullan and McGilligan traded scores as the latter brought his personal tally to 2-5.

Extra-time looked a certainty but, corner back Thomas Magee shot the Coleraine men ahead from the narrowest of angles.

Liam McGoldrick added the insurance point in injury time to seal the victory and the Dr Kerlin Cup for his club.

Coleraine: Ryan McGeough; Ciaran Lagan, Liam McGoldrick (0-1), Thomas Magee (0-1); Barry McGoldrick, Sean Leo McGoldrick, Shay McLaughlin; Niall Holly, Colm McGoldrick (1-8 6f); Declan Mullan (0-1), Tom Carey; Ciaran McGoldrick (0-2), Eoghan Daly.

Subs: Ciaran Lenehan for B McGoldrick (27), Mark McTaggart for E Daly (44), Aidan McGonigle for T Carey (44).

Dungiven: Cahir Hasson; Padraig McNicholl, Thomas McClarey, James Nicholl; Marty McCloskey, Mark Craig (0-1), Thomas Brady; Daire McKeever, Conor Murphy (0-1); Feargal Higgins, Niall O’Neill; Donal McGilligan (2-5 3f), Gabriel McGuigan.

Subs: Marty Burke for N O’Neill (39), Seamus McCloskey for D McKeever (59).

Referee: Kieran Brolly (Claudy)