Cavan was completely dominant from the get go as they moved into fourth place and a playoff position in the senior football charts with two games left on their horizon.
While Monaghan have a game in hand, Cavan will play their Ulster neighbors in the weeks ahead which will allow them to control their destiny somewhat.
On this occasion they eliminated Donegal from contention. Conor Harrison contributed 1-6 to the victory, but he was ably supported by Michael Ireland who added 1-4 in a two pronged monster attack.
The first half was easy going for the winners, although they did take a little time to settle. Playing against 14 to start, they had a 0-3 to 0-1 lead after 10 minutes with Harrison firing all three scores.
Ireland hit the net for their first major on the 20 minute mark, and the side ran out the last four points of the half after Ronan McNamee had Donegal’s second.
In a non-descript half of football, one of the Cavan chances was a screamer from Fergal Ellis that went wide with two minutes left to the break. Brilliant defensive work by Ronan McGinley, Shane Hogan and Ellis was limiting Donegal’s chances and Cavan were purring.
It was more of the same in the second half, as the winners had four of the first six points of the stanza. Ireland had a pair as he showed his undoubted talents, although a Conor Lynam score for Donegal was a bullet that went the wrong side of the bar for the crafty forward.
Donegal’s best period of the game was a seven minute block midway through the second half when Kenny O’Connor had a goal after Gavin Joyce brilliantly stopped the first effort from Lynam, and MacNeice and McHugh had points.
That was the sum of their endeavors however as Cavan rattled off the final 1-6 for the easy win.
Joyce, McGinley who was tremendous, Reilly, the nifty Dalton and the excellent full forward line all had handsome contributions for Cavan.
McHugh, who tried hard, McNamee and Lynam were the few who stood out for Donegal.
Cavan: 1 Gavin Joyce, 2 Ronan McGinley, 3 Ciaran Shields, 4 Shane Hogan, 5 Conor Hogan, 6 Liam Fleming, 7 Fergal Ellis, 8 Mike O’Reilly (0-1), 9 Mike Hallassy (0-1), 10 Richie Morgan (0-2), 11 Sean Dalton (0-1), 12 Tommy Warburton (0-1), 13 John Comerford (0-2), 14 Conor Harrison (1-6), 15 Michael Ireland (1-4). Subs: Conor Sheridan, Michael Sloan, John McCullough.
Donegal: 1 Brian Cuilinan, 2 Michael Clarke, 3 Dan Geraghty, 4 Tommy Moran, 5 Colin Devlin, 6 Mark McHugh (0-1), 7 James McFadden, 8 Adrian O’Connor, 9 Ronan McNamee (0-1), 10 Paddy MacNeice (0-1), 11 Shane Murrin, 12 PJ Flanagan, 13 Niall Forager, 14 Ken O’Connor (1-0), 15 Conor Lynam (0-3).
Man of the Match: Conor Harrison (Cavan).
Referee: Dean O’Connor.
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