MILFORD UNITED 3-0 CLONMANY SHAMROCKS
MILFORD United upset the odds, crushing Clonmany Shamrocks in the Ulster Junior Cup Final at Maginn Park, Buncrana yesterday evening.
A pair of goals from man-of-the-match PJ Hagan added to a fine second-half strike by Karol Duggan gave Peter Doherty’s men a famous victory at Inishowen League headquarters.
Manager Doherty dedicated the win to Milford central midfielder Damian Casey, who earlier broke his leg following a freak stumble in the eighth minute of the contest.
More than one hundred Milford supporters made the journey to Buncrana to back their team and they certainly weren’t disappointed as the boys in blue recorded one of their best ever results.
The game was stopped for almost an hour after midfielder Casey went over on his ankle after being struck by the ball and broke his leg. The player lay stricken in pain for almost forty minutes before an ambulance arrived from Carn, fourteen miles away. He was then removed to Letterkenny Hospital as applause rang out around Maginn Park.
When the game resumed, Milford were on top and, on the half hour mark, they grabbed the lead. A David Curley free-kick from the right was kept alive at the back post by Duggam and striker Hagan cracked in through a crowd of players from twelve yards.
Milford almost struck for a crucial second with fifteen minutes remaining when impressive substitute Owen Ferry picked out Hagan but Peter Devlin made a great save to keep Clonmany in the hunt.
The game was all but over soon after however as Hagan collected Joey Cullen’s pass before laying brilliantly into the path of Karol Duggan who clipped home a sublime finish from the edge of the area to send the Milford bench and supporters into raptures.
With manager Peter Doherty urging his players to ‘dig deep’ and ‘remember who they were playing for’ – a third Milford goal was the icing on the cake.
Ferry was involved again, skipping clear on the right before delivering the best cross of the evening, which was coolly headed in by PJ Hagan at the back post.
Clonmany Shamrocks: Peter Devlin, Mark McLaughlin, Liam Hirrell, Michael Grant, Philip Devlin, Raymond McDaid, Steve Harkin, Conor Bradley, Brendan Devlin, Jason Doherty, Jason Devlin. Subs: Paul McLaughlin, Michael Devlin, Niall McLaughlin, Kevin Harkin, Alan Friel, Kevin McLaughlin.
Milford United: Ian Strain, Brian Peoples, David Curley, Paul Shields, Paddy Peoples, Damian Casey, Pauric Curley, Karol Duggan, Ciaran McGinley, PJ Hagan, Joey Cullen. Subs: Brendan Murray, Peter Doherty, Mark Flood, Owen Ferry, Christy McLafferty, Cathal McGettigan.
MILFORD United manager Michael Deeney acknowledges that his struggling team are entering a crucial stage in their season.