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Dungloe edge ever closer to promotion

Adrian Sweeney of Dungloe.

ALL COUNTY FOOTBALL L EAGUE DIVISION TWO

DUNGLOE 2-14
NAOMH MUIRE 1-07

BY Harry Walsh in Dungloe

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DUNGLOE strengthened their push for a quick return to top flight football when they completed the double over Rosses rivals Naomh Muire on Sunday afternoon.

Tony Boyle’s charges had won nine of their previous eleven league outings going into the game and once they had rattled over the opening four scores inside eight minutes the visitors were playing catch-up thereafter.

Indeed, were if not for an inspired performance from Naomh Muire goalkeeper Brian Grant the hosts would have been out of sight by half-time. The over-worked net minder made superb saves to twice deny the lively Adrian Hanlon from close range while both Raymond Sweeney and Conor Greene should have done better in one on one situations.

Hanlon, a member of the All-Ireland winning 2012 Donegal panel, would not be denied however and it was very much a case of third time lucky as he slotted a left footed effort under the diving body of Grant for the game’s opening goal two minutes before the interval.

When the evergreen Adrian Sweeney dispatched a second goal to the Naomh Muire net midway through the second half the points were safely in the bag for Boyle’s men.

Cory Gallagher, another player to impress on the day, opened the scoring from a ’45 two minutes in before he doubled his, and Dungloe’s, tally with a fine score from play a minute later.

Further points from Adrian Hanlon and Paul McGarvey, finishing of a fine team move, stretched the lead out to four on eight minutes before quick scores from Patrick Gillespie and Harry Harden halved the deficit by the end of the first quarter.

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Hugh Yank Boyle (free) and Sean Sharkey exchanged points as did Sweeney and Boyle (free) before the game’s opening goal arrived on 28 minutes.

Conor Greene’s precise pass put Hanlon in behind the Naomh Muire rearguard and although Grant did get a hand to the ball he was unable to stop it from crossing the line.

Paddy McCafferty fired over a point for the visitors in first half injury time to leave the score 1-6 to 0-05 in favour of Dungloe at the break.

One or two off the ball incidents at the start of the second half ultimately led to a player from each side receiving the ultimate sanction from referee Jimmy White – a red card – nine minutes after the restart with Doalty Boyle (Dungloe) and Paddy McCafferty (Naomh Muire) being asked to make the walk of shame.

Spectators along the sideline suggested that their particular wrestling match was no worse than what had gone on at the same end of the field minutes earlier but one thing the cards did do was restore a bit of law and order as things had, albeit briefly, threatened to get out of control.

Before the sendings off, Dungloe had added three quick points without replay through Adrian Sweeney (2) and Cory Gallagher before Sweeney extended the lead out to eight points.
The advantage was soon eleven as Hanlon and Sweeney combined before the latter drilled a left footed shot high into Grant’s net.

Harry Harden contributed Naomh Muire’s first score of the half on 51 minutes before Jack O’Brien’s quick free kick put Hugh Yank Boyle through to score a Naomh Muire goal.

Substitute Sean Wallace and Sweeney, Hanlon and another sub Benny McGarvey all found the target for Dungloe while another replacement Sean McCafferty split the uprights for Naomh Muire.

Moments later White blew his full-time whistle and it was Dungloe who were celebrating a double scores victory over their Rosses neighbours.

Adrian Sweeney continues to be one of the best club players in the county while Adrian Hanlon is also a handful when he’s in the mood – and he was on Sunday – while Cory Gallagher and Raymond Sweeney are two very consistent performers for Dungloe.

Naomh Muire are a very young team and in Hugh Yank Boyle and Harry Harden they possess two talented forwards who gave the Dungloe defence all they wanted – and at times more – on Sunday.

They’ll be more than happy to consolidate in Division Two this year while Dungloe will be hoping to bounce back to Division One – which they feel is their rightful place.

Last year’s County U16 champions, Dungloe have some fine talent coming through the ranks. It’s just a pity though that their emergence into the senior ranks will come just a little too late for Adrian Sweeney who was at his masterful best once more on Sunday.

DUNGLOE: Ciaran Sharkey; Jack Scally, Darren Curran, Doalty Boyle; Cory Gallagher (0-3, 1 45), Sean Sharkey (0-1), Gerard Walsh; Raymond Sweeney, Paul McGarvey (0-1); Noel McBride, Adrian Hanlon (1-2), David McCarron; Adam Neely, Adrian Sweeney (1-5, 1 free), Conor Greene. Subs: Owen Scally for McBride (34 mins), Sean Wallace (0-1) for Greene (46 mins), Mark Boyle for McGarvey (53 mins) and Benny McGarvey (0-1) for Neely (56 mins).

NAOMH MUIRE: Brian Grant; Patrick Rodgers, Brian Gillespie, Thomas Duffy; Robbie O’Donnell, Owenie McGarvey, Jamie Boyle; Jack O’Brien, Patrick Gillespie (0-1); Jack Boyle, Paddy McCafferty (0-1), Sean Burns; James Ferry, Hugh Yank Boyle (1-2, 2 frees), Harry Harden (0-2). Subs: Sean McCafferty (0-1) for Jack Boyle (54 mins).

REFEREE: Jimmy White (Killybegs).

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