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Aghagallon 0-06 Warrenpoint 0-10

By John Campbell

A stirring last quarter performance that yielded a five-point haul proved Warrenpoint’s passport into the Ulster final at the expense of a plucky Aghagallon (Antrim) side at the Athletic Grounds, Armagh.

But manager Conor Tinnelly is adamant that a repetition of yesterday’s display will not be sufficient to bring provincial glory.

“We produced a strong finish but Aghagallon matched us for long spells and we would need to have shown much more conviction,” he said.

“We will have to show a step up on this form if we are to have any chance of getting our hands on the Ulster trophy.”

Superior stamina, a fresh level of cohesion and the ability to take scores from distance underlined Warrenpoint’s authority.

Yet it was very much neck and neck up until half-time with Aghagallon looking sharp.

Niall Lavery fired them into the lead before Conor Clarke and Ross McGarry whipped over scores that put the Down standard-bearers ahead.

Aghagallon carried a greater degree of penetration prior to half-time and points from Magee and McGarry helped ease them into a 0-4 to 0-3 interval lead.

But after the sides had been deadlocked at 0-5 each, Warrenpoint assumed control when Jamie Grant, Ryan Boyle and Ruairi Cowan (2) projected them into an unassailable 0-10 to 0-5 lead.

Warrenpoint’s penchant for cutting through the heart of the Aghagallon defence almost at will in the last quarter cemented their hold on the game.

Warrenpoint: T Franklin; A Grimes, N McCartan, C Cole; R Boyle (0-1), C McCartan, J Murchan; R Mallon, P Traynor; G Smith, R Cowan (0-2), C Clarke (0-1); R McAleenan, R McGarry (0-4, 0-1 free), G Morgan. Subs: C McLoughlin (0-1) for Clarke (20 mins), J Grant (0-1) for Smith (37), S Curran for Traynor (41), D O’Connor for C McCartan (53 mins).

Aghagallon: G O’Neill; M McStravick, C Loughran, S Branagan; M McKenna, N Lavery (0-2), G Magee (0-2); D McAlernon, O Lenehan; D O’Hagan (0-1), D McAlernon, F Bustard; R Loughran (0-1), D Marshall, C Lavery. Subs: L McCrory for O’Hagan (49 mins), N McStravick for N Lavery (58).

Referee: Eamonn McHugh (Tyrone).

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