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Brennan points the way as Down are demolished

By Kevin Kelly

Tyrone 1-18, Down 2-06: Tyrone justified their favourites tag when they had an emphatic nine-point win over Down in the Ulster minor championship preliminary round.

The Red Hands were on top throughout with Down only getting their second goal with the last kick of the game.

Conor McKenna and Ryan Treanor traded early scores, but then Tyrone took over. Lee Brennan (2), Pauric McAnenly, Ronan Nugent and James Darcy all weighed in with points to put Tyrone 0-7 to 0-1 in front with only 15 minutes played.

Fintan McClure landed a peach from out on the left wing before Down defender Killian McEvoy responded from a free. McAnenly and Frank Aiken exchanged points before Tyrone struck for their goal after half an hour.

A shot from Nugent came back of the post and McClure reacted first to blast to the bottom left hand corner of the net. In first-half injury time McKenna pointed from play and Brennan added another free to give them a 1-11 to 0-3 lead.

Tyrone continued to dictate the pace of the game with half back Enda McGarrity hitting a brace of points early in the second half with captain McKenna and midfielder Macauley Quinn also on target.

Down were awarded a penalty 14 minutes into the second half when Treanor was fouled by Paul O'Neill and substitute Tiarnan Rushe made no mistake. Either side of that goal Treanor hit two points as the Mourne lads enjoyed their best spell of the game, but Tyrone soon took control again.

Quinn and substitutes Jonah Lafferty and Conal McLernon all added points as they kept their opponents at arm's length. James Guinness then pointed for the visitors before substitute Stephen McConville found the net with the last kick of the game but at that stage it was only a consolation score.

Tyrone now face Monaghan next Sunday in the quarter-final

"I was happy with the way that we played at times, with the most pleasing aspect being that there were so many different players on the scoresheet," said Tyrone manager Mickey Donnelly.

"We will prepare for Monaghan now this week and hopefully in that game we can play as well as we did today."

Tyrone: P O'Neill, D Mullan, P O'Neill, N Kelly, E McGarrity [0-2], R Quinn, R Samir, R Nugent [0-1], M Quinn [0-2], P McAnenly [0-2], C McKenna [0-3], J Darcy [0-1], L Brennan [0-4], C O'Hagan, F McClure [1-1]. Subs: K Coney for R Quinn, J Lafferty [0-1] for Brennan, R Coleman for McKenna, C McLernon [0-1] for O'Hagan, B Kennedy for Nugent

Down: M Reid, M Harte, C Fitzpatrick, L Byrne, N Rafferty, J Donnan, K McEvoy [0-1], S Dobbin, C McCartan, P Lively, J Guinness [0-1], R Millar, P Og McCrickard, R Treanor [0-3], F Aiken [0-1]. Subs: CJ Barr for Dobbin, S McConville [1-0] for McCrickard, G McDowell for Millar, T Rushe [1-0] for Lively, S Hardy for McCartan, P Laverty for Donnan

Referee: N Cullen (Fermanagh).

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