Dunloy, Ballymena

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McGoldrick Sends Emmet's Crashing Out



Robert Emmet's Slaughtneil 0-13 Eoghan Rua 1-11


A stoppage-time winner from full-back Liam McGoldrick saw a shellshocked Slaughtneil crash out of the Derry SFC after tonight's Quarter Final replay in front of 3,225 supporters in Owenbeg.


Minutes earlier, McGoldrick had missed a golden opportunity to see his side over the line when he watched his 35-yard free sail to the right and wide, but he dusted himself down, collected the pass from Ruairí Mooney and swung the ball between the Slaughtneil uprights to the delight of the Coleraine support.


The sides began the game almost at full strength, Paul Daly shaking off an ankle injury to take his place in midfield alongside Niall Holly, while Brendan Rogers started at full back after coming through his weekend fitness test in the hurling final.


The North Coast men started brightly but Gavan McWilliams pulled his early free wide of the posts as Eoghan Rua looked to press from the beginning of the game and it was left to Shane McGuigan to slot the game's first point, collecting a pass from Sé and shooting between the uprights.


With both sides attacking in waves, it was the reigning champions who were proving the most clinical, with points from Brian Cassidy, Christopher Bradley and Shane McGuigan extending their lead to four points.


Cassidy continued his excellent start to the evening by slotting a lovely score, slaloming through three Coleraine defenders before firing over from an acute angle on the right hand side. The corner forward turned provider moments later, releasing Shane McGuigan to send over Slaughtneil's sixth unanswered score.


Eoghan Rua finally got off the mark after twenty-two minutes of the first half, Colm McGoldrick finally tuning his radar and tapping over from 13 yards out, only to see his effort immediately cancelled out by Christopher Bradley up the other end.


The reigning Derry and Ulster champions were finding holes in the Eoghan Rua rearguard and filling them with neat punt passes into the hands of their forwards, Brian Cassidy the benefactor after one such ball from Keelan Feeney, before Barry Daly found himself in space up the other end to cancel out Cassidy's effort and see the deficit stand at six points.


With Ciaran McGoldrick giving Paul McNeill a torrid time, Eoghan Rua began to find him with every ball and the approach yielded immediate dividends, McGoldrick fouled on the left hand side allowing Colm McGoldrick to atone for his earlier wide and slot the free over the bar.


Three minutes of the first half remained when Ciaran McGoldrick won another ball in shrugged off his man and tapped over from an angle, before adding another from the next attack to suddenly see Coleraine within four points of their opponents.


Brian Cassidy broke the Eoghan Rua purple patch, jinking his way through for another fine score before Liam McGoldrick received a pass from brother Colm and restored the four-point gap going into the break.


Richard Carey, the hero of the drawn game and indeed the 2010 encounter, replaced Paul Daly at the beginning of the second half, but it was Slaughtneil substitute Ronan Bradley who opened the scoring in the second period, neatly slotting the ball over the bar after a measured Emmet's counter-attack.


It was Slaughtneil's turn to be wasteful, hitting two wides in quick succession as Ciaran McGoldrick continued his superb form, winning yet another ball and drawing the foul from McNeill. Colm fired over the free from close range, before Brian Cassidy again hit back for the champions.


Coleraine's Mark McTaggart was then fouled on his way through and Colm McGoldrick swung over the free to leave four between them. Up the other end, a Christopher Bradley 45 restored the five-point gap that was seemingly keeping the 2010 champions at arm's length.


The Coleraine side would need a goal and got one through Colm McGoldrick. Niall Holly showed great vision to pick out the run of Ruairí Mooney through the middle and it was left to Mooney to draw a man and slip the pass to McGoldrick, who fisted home with McMullan committed.


Their tails now up, Niall Holly knocked over his first score of the evening, cutting in of the right flank to point from a tight angle to leave one between the sides.


Slaughtneil refused to panic, and continued to probe for an opening, that almost came when Colm McGoldrick beat his man, but, bearing down on the posts, he opted to try and find Barry Daly for a goal chance when the shot would have been the better option. Minutes later, he made amends from a similar position, this time taking on the shot and levelling the score.


With six minutes still on the clock, both sides were understandably tentative, probing and searching for an opening to give them the winner. When it eventually arrived four minutes into five minutes of stoppage time, it was Liam McGoldrick who came up the field and sliced his 35-yard free well wide of Antoin McMullan's left hand post.


The collective groan around the Coleraine support was soon silenced. McGoldrick lingered around the forward line, and when Niall Holly collected the breaking ball from the Slaughtneil kick out, McGoldrick was on hand to take the pass and shoot over the bar on the run to give Coleraine the lead.


Emmet's mounted one last attack and seemed to have won a free in front of the stand on the edge of their own half, but referee Dan Mullan blew the final whistle to scenes of delight from the Eoghan Rua support, rage in the Slaughtneil ranks and disbelief on the faces of the neutrals.


The Gym at Maghera Man of the Match Ciaran McGoldrick.

Eoghan Rua will now face Ballinascreen on Sunday, and with the imperious champions defeated, all four teams remaining will be bristling with belief that they can win the Derry championship.


Robert Emmet's Slaughtneil: Antoin McMullan, Paul McNeill, Brendan Rogers, Francis McEldowney (Barry McGuigan), Karl McKaigue, Christopher McKaigue, Keelan Feeney, Patsy Bradley (Conor McAllister), Padraig Cassidy, Jerome McGuigan (Ronan Bradley, 0-01), Sé McGuigan, Meehaul McGrath (Brendan McEldowney), Christopher Bradley (0-01, 0-03f), Shane McGuigan (0-02, 0-01f), Brian Cassidy (0-05).


Eoghan Rua: Ryan McGeogh, Ciaran Lagan, Liam McGoldrick (0-02), Barry Daly (0-01), Ciaran Mullan, Barry McGoldrick, Ciaran Lenehan, Niall Holly (0-01), Paul Daly (Richard Carey), Ruairí Mooney, Sean Leo McGoldrick, Gavin McWilliams (Stephen Coyles), Mark McTaggart (Declan Mullan), Colm McGoldrick (1-01, 0-04f), Ciaran McGoldrick (0-02).


Referee: Dan Mullan (John Mitchell's Glenullin)


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Coverage for tonight's game powered by The Gym at Maghera.