Golden Grahams: Watty Grahams 0-10 - 1-2 Silverbridge
Glen minor boss Fergal McCusker hailed the "golden generation" of Watty Grahams footballers as the Derry club clinched a record three-in-a-row of Ulster minor club football titles with a 0-10 to 1-2 victory over Silverbridge yesterday at St Paul's, Belfast.
The Armagh side led by 1-1 to 0-3 at the break having played with the breeze in the opening half, but were outscored by seven points to one in the second period. Silverbridge opened the scoring on eight minutes through Aaron Duffy and could have been further ahead when Eoin Burns' '45' skidded off the wet surface to test Gavin McCloy in the Glen goals.
A brace of points from Conor Convery had Glen in the lead but a superbly dispatched Jarlath Og Burns penalty – his third of the competition – had the Armagh champions back in front on 23 minutes before Tiarnan Flanagan completed the first half scoring.
The second half belonged to Glen who added five without reply after the restart, the pick of which came from the boot of Cathal Mulholland on 39 minutes.
The Derry side had leaders throughout the park with Conor Glass and Stevie O'Hara superb in midfield, and the full forward line of Flanagan, Convery and the excellent Paul Gunning proving a handful for Silverbridge throughout.
The Armagh side had an excellent goal opportunity on 56 minutes when sub James McKeown shot just wide when a goal would have left just a point between the sides but, in truth, the five points that separated the sides at the final whistle was a fairer reflection of the 60 minutes.
"I knew if we got the performance the result would look after itself. We'd watched Silverbridge and had done our homework on them. We knew they were strong up the middle but thought that our periphery had that bit more experience and in the 50-50 battles we wanted it a wee bit more," said McCusker.
"The bedrock of our team is the tackling and the work-rate and we work on that from under-10 up. But we aren't doing anything different from any other club, this is just a golden generation."