Declan Bogue reports from Healy Park
WITH SEVEN MINUTES minutes of normal time remaining, it looked as if an enormous shock was in waiting for last year’s All-Ireland finalists Tyrone.
Derry had nibbled into their lead since going more offensive after half time, which they entered 0-10 to 0-7 down, and when the excellent Enda Lynn played in Shane McGuigan, the Slaughtneil youngster made no mistake with a blasted shot flying past Niall Morgan in the Tyrone goal.
A successful free-kick from Christopher Bradley soon after had Derry a point up and with all the momentum.
However, Tyrone simply did not panic. In the very next play, Frank Burns spotted substitute Darren McCurry in an acre of space in the central channel. The pass was sensational, but McCurry’s impudence in taking his man on, getting into a goalside position to pull the trigger for the winning goal, was awesome.
It was at that moment when Derry’s game challenge, in seriously trying conditions, ran out of steam.
The Red Hands went on to shoot five of the last six points in the game to put a nice gloss on the scoreboard, but Tyrone will realise they were in serious danger of getting caught.
Credit must go to the Derry management who set out to frustrate and contain in the first half, withdrawing all but Shane McGuigan from their forward line to clog up between the lines, before opening up in the second half.
It’s a performance that will stand them in some stead for the qualifiers. Tyrone meanwhile, go on to face Antrim in the quarter-final at the Athletic Grounds in Armagh.
Scorers for Tyrone: C McShane 0-7, 2f, D McCurry 1-0, P Harte 0-3f, R Donnelly, M Cassidy 0-2 each, P Hampsey, M McKernan, F Burns, HP McGeary, C McAliskey 0-1 each
Scorers for Derry: S McGuigan 1-6, 5f, R Bell 0-3f, C Bradley 0-2, 1f, C McAtamney, C McFaul 0-1 each
1. Niall Morgan (Edendork)
2. Pádraig Hampsey (Coalisland)
3. Ronan McNamee (Aghyaran)
4. Michael McKernan (Coalisland)
5. Michael Cassidy (Ardboe)
6. Ben McDonnell (Errigal Ciaran)
7. Tiernan McCann (Killyclogher)
8. Richard Donnelly (Trillick)
9. Brian Kennedy (Derrylaughan)
10. Matthew Donnelly (Trillick)
11. Niall Sludden (Dromore)
12. Frank Burns (Pomeroy)
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13. Cathal McShane (Owen Roes)
14. Peter Harte (Errigal)
25. Hugh Pat McGeary (Pomeroy)
19. Colm Cavanagh (Moy) for Kennedy (18m)
24. Darren McCurry (Edendork) for Sludden (50m)
20. Kyle Coney (Ardboe) for Cavanagh (56m)
18. Rory Brennan (Trillick) for McGeary (57m)
21. Connor McAliskey (Clonoe) for R Donnelly (63m)
26. Liam Rafferty (Galbally) for McKernan (72m)
1. Thomas Mallon (Loup)
2. Sean Quinn (Swatragh)
3. Brendan Rogers (Slaughtneil)
4. Karl McKaigue (Slaughtneil)
5. Paul McNeill (Slaughtneil)
6. Christopher McKaigue (Slaughtneil)
7. Niall Keenan (Castledawson)
8. Padraig Cassidy (Slaughtneil)
9. Conor McAtamney (Swatragh)
26. Jason Rocks (Loup)
11. Enda Lynn (Greenlough)
12. Ciaran McFaul (Glen)
13. Shane McGuigan (Slaughtneil)
14. Ryan Bell (Ballinderry)
25. Liam McGoldrick (Coleraine)
10. Emmett Bradley (Glen) for Quinn (H-T)
15. Christopher Bradley (Slaughtneil) for Bell (49m)
19. Conor Doherty (Newbridge) for Rocks (58m)
22. Ruairi Mooney (Coleraine) for Lynn (64m)
18. Patrick Coney (Loup) for Keenan (71m)
17. Eoghan Concannon (Steelstown) for McGoldrick (71m)
Referee: Paddy Neilan (Roscommon).
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