Dunloy, Ballymena

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Mooney Leads Coleraine to JHC Title

Na Magha 1-09

Eoghan Rua 0-16

Eoghan Rua's hurlers eventually dispatched Na Magha's title challenge this afternoon to lift the Leadon Timberframe Derry JHC title at Owenbeg.

Hitting only two wides in the hour, the Ballyarnett side were efficient as they scavenged for opportunities throughout the first half, but Eoghan Rua's attacking trio of Ruairí Mooney, Niall Holly and Sean Leo McGoldrick could afford their profligacy and they deservedly led at the break.

Na Magha hit a second half goal to briefly trouble the Coleraine men, but an immediate tightening-up shut down any hopes of the city men making a comeback and sparked wild scenes of reluctant enthusiasm among their ranks.

Eoghan Rua signalled their intent within 2 minutes. Barry Robinson produced an outstanding save, leaping full length to parry a Sean-Leo McGoldrick piledriver as it headed for the top corner.

Two minutes later though McGoldrick did get his side off the mark from a free, but Breandán Quigley immediately hit back for the city side before Alan Grant finished a neat puck out move with a score from distance to edged them ahead.

Sean-Leo then fired over another brace, this time from play, before turning provider to send Ruairí Mooney clear for his first of the afternoon. Mooney then went close to the game's first goal, Barry Robinson again repelling the attack, getting down low to make the block this time.

Déaglán Foley opened his account in response for Na Magha, but a further McGoldrick double either side of a Niall Holly point increased the gap to three.

Na Magha were living off scraps but feasting well when the opportunities arose and points from Foley and Bliadhan Glass left just a point between them in the 23rd minute.

Both teams then entered a five-minute point-trading spell with points from Foley, Thomas Magee and Niall Holly leaving a three-point gap between them at the short whistle.

Man of the Match Ruairí Mooney is thrilled to receive the accolade.

Déaglan Foley opened the second half with a sniff of goal, but a swarming Eoghan Rua defence descended to clear the ball and at the other end Ruairí Mooney got a hurl to a long ball from Aidan Boyle to flick it over the bar.

Foley responded by catching a dropping ball and sweeping it over to restore the three-point gap, but Mooney hit back immediately before a poor Na Magha puck out landed in the hand of Niall Holly who again split the posts.

A jubilant Eoghan Rua side receive the Derry JHC trophy.

The Na Magha centre-forward pointed a 44th minute free, but Eoghan Rua again responded with points from McGoldrick, Mooney and Anton Rafferty before the city men were handed a lifeline by referee Aidan McAleer.

A pull on Conor Shiels by Anton Rafferty earned the Coleraine man a yellow card and Na Magha a penalty. Déaglán Foley's effort bounced back off the crossbar but substitute Daryl Connolly was alert to the rebound and pulled it to the net to reduce the gap to four.

Foley then cut it to three with a neat free in the 58th minute, but Eoghan Rua reverted to their football set-up, swarming the defence to eradicate any slim hopes of a Na Magha comeback.

With their Ulster hiatus up, the Coleraine side will head into the provincial campaign with optimism, while Na Magha will hope to put a tough season behind them and build afresh in 2020.

Na Magha: Barry Robinson, Oran O'Doherty, Diarmuid Shiels, Diarmaid Mackey, James McQuillan, Breandán Quigley (0-01), Mark McShane, Fearghal Mac an Deanaigh, Bliadhan Glass (0-02), Timothy Rankin, Déaglán Foley (0-01, 0-04f), Ryan O'Donnell, Conor O'Rourke, Connor Shiels, Alan Grant (0-01).

Subs: Cormac Durey for Diarmaid Mackey 22', Connor Shiels for Ryan O'Donnell 45', Daryl Connolly (1-00) for Conor O'Rourke 46'.

Eoghan Rua: Kevin McCarry, Ciaran Lagan, Barry McGoldrick, Pearse Dallas, Ciaran McGoldrick, Colm McGoldrick, Aidan Boyle, Liam McGoldrick, Tomas Magee (0-01), Anton Rafferty (0-01), Sean Leo McGoldrick (0-04, 0-03f), Niall Holly (0-03), Paul Roantree, Ruairí Mooney (0-04), Dara McGoldrick.

Subs: Michael McQuillan for Ciaran Lenehan 48'.

Referee: Aidan McAleer - Dún na nGall

Man of the Match: Ruairí Mooney - Eoghan Rua

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