GAA: Tyrone record eight-point success over Down in Ulster replay at Pairc Esler
Last Updated: 27/05/14 6:01pm
Tyrone booked a quarter-final date with defending Ulster champions Monaghan after defeating Down by 3-11 to 0-12 in their preliminary round replay at Pairc Esler.
Goals in either half from Ciaran McGinley, coupled with a Peter Harte penalty on 52 minutes, ensured a comfortable victory for the Red Hands.
Despite missed a penalty inside the opening minute, Down finished the first half strongly to cut their interval deficit to 1-6 to 0-7, but McGinley bagged his second maximum within seconds of the restart and Harte’s spot kick put the result beyond doubt.
An incident-packed first-half was just 30 seconds old when Down were awarded a penalty after Conor Maginn was fouled by Harte.
Aidan Carr, who scored from the spot in the drawn game, stepped up once again but he was denied by a superb save from Niall Morgan.
Conor Laverty broke the deadlock on three minutes but Tyrone replied with four unanswered scores, Ronan O’Neill (2), Morgan and Harte all raising the white flag.
Tempers flared on a number of occasions during the first half, but despite the protestations of both benches, referee Cormac Reilly kept his cards in his pocket.
A pair of Donal O’Hare frees reduced Down’s deficit to two points on 21 minutes, but Tyrone hit back immediately when Ciaran McGinley latched onto a long ball and finished past Brendan McVeigh.
Morgan extended Tyrone’s lead from a free but Down rallied during the closing stages of the first half, hitting four unanswered points. The impressive Laverty, Maginn, Dan Gordon and O’Hare were all on target to leave the home side trailing by two points at the short whistle.
However, Down undid their good work within 35 seconds of the restart when poor defending allowed the unmarked McGinley to fire into the top corner of the net.
Points from McGinley and Morgan made it a double-scores game, while Sean Cavanagh rattled the crossbar with a stinging shot.
Benny Coulter sparked a mini-revival for Down, the substitute scoring within 60 seconds of his introduction, and Laverty set up O’Hare to reduce the gap to five points.
But Down’s comeback hopes were effectively ended when Tyrone were awarded a controversial penalty for a foul on Ronan McNabb. McVeigh got a hand to Harte’s spot kick but he was unable to keep his effort out.
Jerome Johnston and Harte both saw efforts come back off the post, while Cavanagh missed a glorious chance for a fourth goal when he latched onto a McVeigh kickout.
With the home supporters heading for the exits, Conor McAliskey kicked a fine point to put the seal on a convincing victory for Mickey Harte’s men.
Tyrone: C McGinley 2-1, P Harte 1-1 (1-0pen), N Morgan 0-3 (2f, 1 ‘45’), R O’Neill 0-2 (1s/l), D McCurry (f), M Donnelly, N McKenna, C McAliskey 0-1 each.
Down: D O’Hare 0-6 (4f), C Laverty 0-2, C Maginn, D Gordon, B Coulter, C Garvey 0-1 each.