Tierney points way for Cavan

Cavan retained their Ulster U21 football championship title with a battling display at Brewster Park last night.

Five points from full-forward Kevin Tierney denied the Red Hands in a repeat of last year’s provincial decider.

Cavan were awarded a penalty after just 15 seconds when Chris Conroy was fouled after picking up a Joe Dillon cross, and wing back Darragh Sexton stepped up to slot the resultant kick home.

Tyrone scored four of the five points registered in the opening quarter, but couldn’t manage to get their noses in front.

Richard Donnelly and Darren McCurry both converted frees, and they went level when midfielder Harry Óg Conlan hit their first point from play.

Cavan’s ploy of targeting full forward Tierney with long dropping balls failed to pay direct dividends, but he did convert three frees to keep his side in front, and they led by 1-4 to 0-5 at the interval.

Tenacious Cavan squeezed their opponents out of the game in the second half, with Michael Brady and Jason McLoughlin superb at the back and Packie Leddy an immense figure at midfield.

Tierney continued to hit the target from placed balls, and a superb Raymond Lynch effort gave them a five point cushion.

Conor Moynagh rose to the challenge at the heart of the Breffni defence as the Red Hands pushed for late scores.

They did narrow the gap to a goal through Niall Sludden and Tommy Canavan, but Cavan held on for their fourth title.

Scorers for Cavan: D Sexton 1-0 (pen), K Tierney 0-5 (5f), J Brady 0-3 (2f), J Dillon, R Lynch 0-1 each.

Scorers for Tyrone: D McCurry 0-3 (3f), R Donnelly 0-2 (2f), B Tierney, N Sludden, S Tierney, T Canavan (f), H Conlan (0-1) each.

CAVAN: C Gilsenan, F Flanagan, K Brady, J McLoughlin, D Sexton, C Moynagh, M Brady, P Leddy, K Clarke, J Dillon, C Conroy, R Lynch, J Brady, K Tierney, N O’Donnell.

Subs: P King for Brady, B Reilly for Dillon, S Nolan for Conroy, PP O’Hara for Reilly.

TYRONE: D McAnenly, B Tierney, D McNally, HP McGeary, N Sludden, C Clarke, T McCann, H Óg Conlan, S Warnock, S Tierney, T Canavan, R Donnelly, D McCurry, C McAliskey, C Daly.

Subs: P Mallon for McCann, S McGuigan for Warnock, C Grugan for Conlan, P McNulty for Donnelly, J McCullagh for Daly.

Referee: B Cassidy (Derry).

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