Noamh Conaill 1-11 Trillick 2-09

Trillick held out for a dramatic one point victory over Naomh Conaill in a rip-roaring Ulster Club Championship quarter final at MacCumhaill Park, Ballybofey.

The Tyrone champions led by six points at half time but saw that lead wiped out shortly after the midway point of the second half with substitute Dara Gallagher and goalscorer, Ciaran Thompson doing the damage for Naomh Conaill.

However, Trillick dug deep and a couple of late scores from Lee Brennan and the excellent Richard Donnelly saw them over the line.

The winners, playing in their first Ulster club tie in 29 years, led by six points at half time, 2-04 to 0-04.
Their first goal came after only two minutes - Niall Gormley firing to the net after Lee Brennan's free came back off the post.

Trillick, however, showed little sign of any nerves and their prospects were boosted when Naomh Conaill's Anthony Thompson was shown a straight red card.

Naomh Conaill then lost their experienced free taker, Dermot 'Brick' Molloy to injury soon after and points from Richard Donnelly and Gormley saw Trillick lead 1-02 to 0-02.

In fairness to the Donegal side, they managed to keep in touch with frees from Brendan McDyer and John O'Malley. However, Trillick always carried a threat coming forward and the impressive Mattie Donnelly and Lee Brennan scored delightful points before Daire Gallagher finished off a wonderful move to score Trillick's second goal just before the break.

The Glenties outfit brought on the experienced Dara Gallagher at half time and he made an immediate impact, scoring a wonderful point within 15 seconds of the restart.

Naomh Conaill's Johnny McLoone added another point before Ciaran Thompson cracked home an unstoppable effort to close the gap to three points, 2-06 to 1-06.

Dara Gallagher hit five points the losers, who, despite being a man down, took the game to their opponents in the closing stages. 

But they perhaps left themselves with just too much to do and while they outscored the winners by 1-07 to five points in the second half, they just couldn't find a late equalising score as Trillick won by the minimum.

Naomh Conaill: Stephen McGrath; Aaron Thompson, AJ Gallagher, Kevin McGettigan; Marty Boyle, Anthony Thompson, Eoin Waide; Ciaran Thompson (1-00), Leo McLoone; Ethan O’Donnell, Eunan Doherty, John O’Malley (0-01, free); Brendan McDyer (0-01 free), Dermot Molloy (0-01, free), Leon Thompson (0-01).

Subs: Cathal Ellis for D Molloy (15), Johnny McLoone (0-2) for O’Donnell (19); Dara Gallagher (0-5, 0-3f) for AJ Gallagher (half time); Seamus Corcoran for O'Malley (53); Ethan O'Donnell for McDyer (53), Brendan McDyer for Doherty (58).

Trillick: Joe Maguire; Stephen O’Donnell, Ruairí Kelly, Damien Kelly; Niall Donnelly, Rory Brennan, Daniel McDonnell; Richard Donnelly (0-02), Eoin Gormley; Matthew Donnelly (0-01), Prionsias O’Kane, Sean Kelly; Niall Gormley (1-02), Lee Brennan (0-04, 0-2f), Daire Gallagher (1-00).

Subs: Shane Gormley for E Gormley (44), Fergal Donnelly for McDonnell (48).

Referee: Noel Mooney (Cavan).