Donegal need penalties to get over Monaghan

Monaghan lost out to Donegal on penalties after the game finished level at 1-12 to 2-9 after extra time in Ballyshannon writes Michael Cooke.

It was a tight affair throughout as Donegal led 1-5 to five points at half-time before Monaghan demonstrated resilience coming from behind to level matters at full-time.

The first 20 minutes were an indicator of how the remainder of the game would unfold with the teams deadlocked at three points each.

Gary Mohan, Jason Irwin and Aaron Mulligan were all on target for Monaghan.

Donegal were subsequently awarded a penalty in the 24th minute, Aaron Doherty found the net.

The penalty proved the difference at half-time with both sides adding two points each before the interval as Gary Mohan and Karl Gallagher were on target for the Farney men.

The second-half began in similar fashion to the opening period, when Gary Mohan scored a 39th minute goal, the sides were level once again.

Liam Og Murray subsequently slotted over a point giving Monaghan a two-point lead before a goal from Ethan Harkin restored a two-point cushion for the hosts with 10 minutes remaining.

Monaghan refused to give in with Aaron Mulligan adding three points to level the game at full-time.

Extra-time followed with the first five minutes finishing scoreless. Monaghan’s Jason Irwin and Donegal’s Aaron Doherty traded a point each in the second-half sending the game to penalties.

Donegal advanced to the Ulster semi-final winning 3-1 on penalties with Aaron Doherfty, Eric Carr and Caolan McGroddy on target for the victors.

Cormac McKenna scored Monaghan’s only goal in the shoot-out.