Derry 1-12 2-12 Down
Down hit two goals in six minutes to stun holders Derry at the death in the Guinness Ulster Hurling semi-final at Casement Park.
Dual player Geoffrey McGonigle made an surprise appearance for Derry against Down in the Guinness Ulster Senior Hurling semi-final at Casement Park but even he couldn't prevent the Mournemen of stopping the holders in their hat-trick bid.
Down, the more determined looking side, won in a thrilling finish by 2-12 to 1-12 with Martin Colulter hitting an injury-time goal to win the match.
McGonigle is due to play at No.13 with Derry tomorrow in the USFC first round game against Antrim, at Casement Park.
The Mournemen controlled the opening half after which they led by 0-8 to 0-4, thanks to a 20 minutes of total supremacy during which they rifled over six points to just one for Derry. Noel Sands (2), Tom Coulter ('65'), Paud Braniff (free) and Greg McCartan all got their names on the scoresheet but
the introduction of McGonigle seemed to lift the holders.
Oliver Collins pointed his second freed and Gregory Biggs dropped a long range effort over the Down bar but those scores were wiped out by pointed frees by Tom Coulter Paul Braniff. Another super point by Biggs closed the first period scoring and kept Derry in touch.
Down had the slight breeze in their backs and their hurling was crisper than that of their opponents. The Mourne defence never gave the Oak Leaf forwards room to get a clear shot at goals and Down led 0-8 to 0-4 at the interval.
Derry opened the second half in a determined mood and a 43rd minute goal by John O'Dwyer shot them into a 1-6 to 0-8 lead. McGonigle added a point before Down were awarded a penalty. 'Keeper Graham Clarke went upfield to take it but his shot was saved by his opposite number Kieran Stevenson.
Down's first score of the second half didn't come until the 55th minute - a point by Ger McGrattan to leave just a goal in it (1-9 to 0-9). A goal by Noel Sands on 65 minutes levelled the argument 1-10 apiece and a Martin Coulter injury time goal polished off the holders.
DERRY - K Stevenson; E McKeever, G Brunton, R Lynch; R McCloskey, C McEldowney, A McCloskey; D Doherty, O Collins (0-3); R Kennedy, Gregory Biggs (0-5), Gary Biggs (0-1); M Collins, P O'Kane, J O'Dwyer (1-0). Subs: G McGonigle (0-1) for Kennedy (20); D Magill for P O'Kane (56);
DOWN -Graham Clarke; S Wilson, S Murray, L Clarke; Gabriel Clarke, G Savage, T Coulter (0-2); G Adair, G Gordon; G McGrattan (0-2), M Braniff (0-1), J Trainor; P Coulter, P Braniff (0-3), N Sands (1-3). B Coulter for M Braniff (35); T McMahon for Gordon (41); M Coulter (1-0) for P Coulter (55);
REFEREE - P Horan (Offaly).