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MacRory Cup draw serves up tasty semi-final matches

By John Campbell

Published 22/02/2016

Big ties: Seamus Woods has high hopes for the semi-finals
Big ties: Seamus Woods has high hopes for the semi-finals

The Ulster Colleges Council certainly appears to have hit the jackpot in terms of the semi-final draw for the Dankse Bank MacRory Cup competition.

An all-Armagh derby tie between St Ronan's, Lurgan and St Paul's, Bessbrook is complemented by an extension of the famed Tyrone v Derry rivalry with St Patrick's Academy, Dungannon facing St Patrick's College, Maghera in the other tie.

"We would hardly ask for two better ties. These games will have appeal well beyond the schools involved," said Ulster Colleges' secretary Seamus Woods.

Yesterday St Paul's, galvanised by Jarlath Burns Jnr at midfield and bolstered by the sublime finishing of Liam Kerr, swept past St Michael's, Enniskillen on a 0-10 to 1-2 score line at Clones.

Kerr's half-dozen points, the aerial authority of Burns and the solid defensive performance of Declan Loye cemented a St Paul's performance that perhaps hints at even better things to come.

Meanwhile, St Patrick's Academy, Dungannon lived dangerously before edging out holders St Patrick's College, Cavan in Saturday's quarter-final at Corduff.

Ryan Coleman (0-5) and Cormac O'Hagan (0-4) shared the lion's share of the winners' scores, the most important coming deep in extra-time when O'Hagan unerringly steered over a free that took his side into the decider.

The Cavan side looked to be on their way to victory when they led in the closing moments of normal time until Coleman snatched an equaliser.

This set the stage for extra-time with O'Hagan's point proving the only score in this segment of a gripping contest.

Belfast Telegraph

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