No problems for Derry against Tyrone

Tyrone 0-6 Derry 2-13

Tyrone 0-6 Derry 2-13

Derry booked their ticket to the Ulster SHC quarter-finals this afternoon, when a comfortable Healy Park win over Tyrone set up a date with Down.

The Red Hands, having won the NHL Division Four title, believed they were capable of shocking an injury-hit Oak Leaf side, but were unable to bridge the gulf in class.

Goals from Michael Kirkpatrick and Alan Grant sealed a straightforward win for Ger Rogan’s side.

Oisin McCloskey got Derry off to a positive start with a couple of long-range points, with Mark Craig also hitting the target from long range.

But Tyrone, playing into the wind, kept themselves in touch in the opening stages with scores from Cathal McErlean and Rory O’Neill.

The Oak Leafers continued to press forward, putting their opponents under spells of heavy pressure, but the Red Hands survived a number of dangerous moments, thanks to some excellent defending from Damian Maguire, Martin Grogan and Stephen Donnelly.

Derry were awarded a penalty in the 18th minute for a foul on Michael Kirkpatrick, but McCloskey’s shot was saved by goalkeeper John Devlin.

They did breach the Tyrone defence for a goal in the 25th minute, Kirkpatrick collecting Alan Grant’s long delivery to turn his marker and fire to the corner of the net.

McErlean responded with a couple of converted frees, but at the break, Derry led by 1-8 to 0-4.

Derry played a controlled game playing into the wind and rain in the second half, comfortably preventing the home side from building any sort of momentum.

Kirkpatrick slotted a couple of frees in a low-scoring third quarter, and all Tyrone could manage in reply was another placed ball score from McErlean.

Grogan performed superbly at the back for Tyrone, but the experience and superior technique of the Oak Leafers ensured that there would be no shock result, with the NHL Division Four champions struggling to match the first touch of their opponents.

Grogan landed a long range free, but they never got close, and a late Alan Grant goal sealed a comfortable win for Derry.

Tyrone: J Devlin, Ryan O’Neill, D Maguire, R Winters, SP Begley, S Donnelly, M Grogan (0-1, f), T Hughes, A Kelly, M O’Gorman, Rory O’Neill (0-1), G Fox, C McErlean (0-3, 3f), P O’Connor, C Grogan.

Subs: B McGilloway for Hughes, M Winters for O’Connor, B Winters for McErlean, C Gallagher for Kelly

Derry: P Magill, R McCloskey, C Quinn, C Mackle, C McKenna, L Hinphey, S Cassidy, O McCloskey (0-4, 4f), M Craig (0-2), C McKeever, A Grant (1-1), P Kelly, O Doherty, M Kirkpatrick (1-6, 0-4f), B Quigley.

Subs: P Kelly for Quigley, S Farren for Kelly.

Referee: O Elliot (Antrim).

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