Slaughtneil 4-12 Ballinascreen 1-11
Slaughtneil defeated Ballinascreen by ten points to retain their Derry senior football title at Celtic Park on Sunday.
Chasing four-in-a-row, the Emmet’s raced to a 0-4 to 0-0 lead as the holders threw down the gauntlet to a side that had not lifted the John McLaughlin Cup since 1973.
Ballinascreen burst into life as county star Benny Heron, covering every blade of grass, took the fight to the champions. Indeed, St Colm's hit four of the next five scores.
Unfortunately for the underdogs, that run of scoring was punctuated by a Chrissy McKaigue goal, set up by fellow defender Brendan Rogers’ rampaging burst forward.
Slaughtneil then took a firm grip of proceeding in the second quarter of the game with two ‘Sammy’ Bradley points sandwiching a 21st minute Shane McGuigan goal which rocketed into the top left hand corner of Niall McGlade’s net to lead 2-8 to 0-7 at the break.
Goals from Keelan Feeney and a second Shane McGuigan effort all but confirmed a Slaughtneil win early in the second half, with an Anton Bradley major only a consolation for the losers.
The holders were also afforded the luxury of missing an injury time penalty when Niall McGlade dived low to his right to thwart Sammy Bradley.
SLAUGHTNEIL: A McMullan, P McNeill, B Rogers, K McKaigue, F McEldowney, C McKaigue (1-0), K Feeney (1-0), Py Bradley, P Cassidy (0-1), C O'Doherty, Pl Bradley (0-1, 0-1f), M McGrath (0-1), Sh McGuigan (2-4, 0-1f), Se McGuigan (0-1), C Bradley (0-3). Subs: R Bradley for C O'Doherty (50), B McGuigan for F McEldowney (51), P McGuigan for Py Bradley (53)
BALLINASCREEN: N McGlade, P McGlade, D McBride, E Gilmore, K Conway, M McShane, P Bradley (0-2), P Burns, A Kelly (1-0), C McWilliams, S Mulgrew (0-4, 0-4f), B Herron (0-2), B Heron (0-1), R Murphy (0-1), B Grant (0-1). Subs: M McBride for P Burns, M Bradley for E Gilmore (both 26 mins), G Conway for R Murphy (50 mins), JP Devlin for A Kelly (53 mins)
Referee: D Mullan (Glenullin)