Wins for Ulster University and ATU Donegal

By Michael McMullan

ULSTER University and ATU Donegal have set up a top of the table last in their section of the Higher Education Football League Division One.

The sides will meet next Wednesday night in Convoy to see who tops the group and gets a home draw in the quarter-finals.

Second half goals from former Hogan Cup winning duo Josh Largo Elis and Pól McKervey propelled Ulster University to a 2-8 to 0-4 victory at home to QUB on Wednesday night.

The visitors opened the scoring from wing-back Diarmuid Baker, but it was Barry Dillon’s side who took over and went two clear with three points from Baker’s Steelstown teammate Ben McCarron.

ROCK…Finn McElroy was at the heart of the Ulster University defence

Lorcan McWilliams hit back with points for QUB and they trailed 0-3 to 0-2 at the break, but were lucky when ‘keeper Brian Cassidy turned a Ryan Jones effort onto the crossbar earlier in the half.

Ulster University moved the Jones to wing back at half time and got a grip at midfield to win the first four of Cassidy’s kick-outs of the second half.

Ronan McCaffery scored the point of the half, a booming effort from long-range but the game changed in the 36th minute when a Cassidy kick-out was intercepted the McKervey lobbed him with a cool finish to the empty net.

Cassidy made a further save from McKervey, substitute Liam Gray missed a good goal chance and Karl Gallagher had one ruled out for square ball for a rampant Ulster University side.

Diarmuid Baker hit the visitors’ only score of the second half before Largo Elis tapped home the winners’ second goal from close range.

Ulster University: Odhrán Lynch; Ryan Convery, Finn McElroy, Ronan Boyle; Ronan McCaffrey (0-1), Ryan Magill (0-1), Josh Largo-Elis (1-0); Aodhan Donaghy, Odhran Murdock; Pól McKervey (1-0), Karl Gallagher (0-1), Ryan Cunningham; Ryan Jones, Ben McCarron (0-4, 1f), Ciaran Daly
Subs: Gareth Donaghy (0-1f) for R Boyle (HT), Liam Gray for C Daly (48), Conall Devlin for R Cunningham (54), Aidan Harney for P McKervey (54), Ronan McHugh for R Jones (56), Aaron Jones for R Convery (56)

Queens’ University: Brian Cassidy; Sean McCarthy, Michael Meehan; Peter Fagan; Ardan McAvoy; Peter McGrane, Thomas McCormack, Diarmuid Baker (0-2); Callum O’Hare, Odhran Mallon; Fintan Canavan, Lorcan McWilliams (0-2, 1f), Conal Logan; Fionn Nagle, Eoin McGeehin
Subs: Tiarnan Bogue for C Logan (36), James O’Hara for F Canavan (44), Billy Campbell for F Nagle (48), Sean Campbell for S McCarthy (49)

In the other game in the section, ATU Donegal were 0-15 to 1-7 winners over St Mary’s in Garvaghy after leading by nine points at the break.

The Letterkenny based college were winners over QUB in their first game and Maxi Curran’s side were well in control by half-time.

Donegal senior duo Conor O’Donnell and Jason McGee were on the scoresheet. A Ronan McGrath goal wasn’t enough to derail ATU.

ATU Donegal: Johnny Toye; Aaron Gilhooley, Kieran Tobin, Dylan Dorrian; Carlos O’Reilly (0-1), Jack Gallagher, Keelan Dunleavy (0-2); Ryan McFadden, Beanon Corrigan; Liam Gaughan, Jason McGee (0-2),  Jack McSharry (0-2); Mark McAteer (0-2), Conor O’Donnell (0-4), Rory O’Donnell (0-2)
Subs: Eoin Dowling for R McFadden (HT), Conal McDermott for D Dorrian (50), Keelan McGroddy (0-1) for M McAteer (40)

POINTING THE WAY…Jason McGee kicked two points for ATU Donegal in their win over St Mary’s

Fresher games

Ulster University came back from four points down to see off QUB (2-15 to 2-8) in Wednesday’s Division One Freshers’s game.

A goal from Ardboe’s Daniel Quinn had QUB 1-9 to 0-8 ahead, leaving the visitors with it all to do in the second half.

Michael Hamill and Jamie Doran each kicked four points over the hour, with Armagh’s Fergal Kieran and substitute Conor Hand bagged goals for Anthony McGrath’s side.

Diarmuid King hit QUB second goal, but it wasn’t enough to stop Ulster University picking up their second win of the season.

ATU Donegal drew with St Mary’s in the other Fresher game (0-9 each) and host Ulster University next week in the final group game.

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