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Carrickmacross and Ardboe in last four

By John Martin

Ardboe and Carrickmacross both secured a semi-final berth in the Bank of Ireland Ulster minor club football tournament at St Pauls.

Tyrone champions Ardboe saw off Rostrevor in atrocious conditions on Saturday on a 1-11 to 0-11 scoreline, with Carrickmacross coming through against Antrim side St Johns by the minimum margin, 0-10 to 0-9 on Sunday.

Ardboe started the brighter and held a 1-3 to 0-1 lead after 12 minutes with Nathan Bell firing home the game's only goal. The Down men then began to work their way back into contention and levelled matters at 1-3 to 0-6 just before the break with a point from Nicky Murray.

Midway through the second half, Rostrevor found themselves ahead when Joe Morgan pointed, however the Down lads managed just one more point in the final quarter hour.

On Sunday Carrickmacross played with the advantage of a strong breeze in the opening half against west Belfast side St Johns, but held only a two-point gap at the break, 0-6 to 0-4. The Monaghan men stretched their lead to four with points from Fergal Lonergan and Stephen O'Hanlon after Matthew Magennis had watched his shot hit the Carrick bar.

The excellent Conor Johnston notched three points for the Johnnies, and with a Donal Nugent free splitting the posts, the sides were level at 0-9 apiece on 43 minutes. The game produced just one more score however with Corrie Sullivan converting a free five minutes from time to seal the win for the Emmets.

Carrickmacross now face the winners of the Ramor United-Silverbridge in the semis, while Ardboe take on DerrySt Johns kingpins Glen.

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