DANSKE BANK GERRY BROWN CUP FINAL St Colm’s Draperstown 6-13 Moville Community College 3-7
DESPITE being hit by an early Moville scoring blitz, St Colm’s Draperstown powered back to win the Gerry Brown Cup on Tuesday at Owenbeg.
In doing so, they became the third Derry school to win Ulster football honours at U14.5 level, following in the footsteps of St Pius Magherafelt (Loch An Iúir) and St Patrick’s Dungiven (Ennis Cup).
It was Moville who raced into a 1-2 to 0-2 lead after five minutes, with points from Patrick Hirrell and Evan Davenport, following a disputed Darragh Gillen goal.
A high ball from Drew McKinney was brilliantly fielded by Moville full-forward Peter Grant and Davenport slammed to the net for a second goal.
With Shiels controlling the game with his penetrating runs from deep, St Colm’s got back into the game.
The Derry side were awarded a 13th minute penalty. Zach Conlon, who was impressive in the run-up to the final, made a save from Fergal Bradley, who smashed his rebound off the post.
Joe McKenna registered a point for St Colm’s, and Ryan McElhennon raced through the Moville defence before kicking goalwards and the ball was bundled over the line.
It sparked St Colm’s into action, who levelled the game with points from Aodan McCallion and wing-back Kevan Donnelly. A St Colm's goal from Fergal Bradley at the end of a well-contructed move put them in the driving seat.
Half-time: St Colm’s 2-9 Moville 2-4
Evan Hudner and Evan Davenport cut the margin at the start of the half but a St Colm’s goal on the counter-attack by Joe McKenna stopped the comeback.
There followed a lull without a score before Moville struck for a 43rd minute goal. A high ball from Darragh Gillan was well fielded by goalkeeper Ryan McCullagh but the ball was knocked from his grasp and into the net. Despite St Colm’s dominance, the Donegal side cut the lead to just four points.
A free from Fergal Bradley had Draperstown back on the scoresheet and an Eoin Donnelly tackle started a move that led to a fine Ryan McElhennon score on the run from an acute angle.
With 13 minutes remaining, St Colm’s grabbed a fourth goal. Marc Wilson started the move with a tackle at midfield and after linking with McElhennon and McKenna, Wilson was on the end of the move to finish to the net.
Aodan McCallion’s long ball to Fergal Bradley led to Ryan McElhennon’s second goal of the game to rubber stamp the St Colm’s dominance.
In the closing moments, Andrew McBride cut out a Moville attack, the ball was worked out to Joe McKenna and substitute Eoghan McNicholl took possession before floating a sweet strike to the top corner, for the final goal of the game.
After the final whistle, Tommy Rogers of the Ulster Colleges committee presented the Gerry Brown Cup to St Colm’s captain Conor Shiels.
ST COLM’S: Ryan McCullagh, Caolan Fullerton, Andrew McBride, Riain O’Hagan, Kevan Donnelly (0-2), Conor Shiels, Dara McElhennon, Marc Wilson (1-0), Eoin Donnelly (0-1), Joe McKenna (1-2), Ryan McElhennon (2-3), Conan Bradley, Aodan McCallion (0-3, 1f), Fergal Bradley (1-2, 1f), Jamie Lee McGlade. SUBS: Sean Óg McKenna for D McElhennon (49), Eoghan McNicholl (1-0) for JL McGlade (54), Conor Boyle for J McKenna (57).