Ulster Club SHC: Dunloy too strong for 14-man Ballycran in semi-final

Dunloy sweep Ballycran aside to book Ulster Club final spot

Dunloy defeated Ballycran 2-23 to 0-11 in their Ulster club hurling semi-final to book a place in the decider for the first time since 2009.

A Conal Cunning goal helped the Antrim champions, who face Slaughtneil in the decider, lead 1-11 to 0-7 at the break in the Athletic Grounds on Sunday.

Ballycran had corner back Gerard Hughes sent-off early in the second half for striking Nigel Elliott.

Dunloy dominated thereafter and Anton McGrath picked off a second goal.

This year's final will be a repeat of the provincial semi-final two years ago when Slaughtneil came out on top.

Full forward Cunning's goal was just reward for Dunloy's early dominance, although Ballycran did reply with three points from play from Liam Savage.

Chrissy Brogan (2), Nicky McKeague, Eoin O'Neill and Keelan Molloy all shot over points from play but three Conor Woods frees left the Down champions trailing by five into injury-time.

Dunloy captain Paul Shields chipped in with a late score to end a first half which saw Dunloy goalkeeper Ryan Elliott pull off two outstanding saves from Conor Woods and Stuart Martin, both from close range.

Barely two minutes into the second half Ballycran corner back Hughes received a straight red card for striking Elliott off the ball and in full view of referee James Clarke.

Elliott, who required treatment for a facial injury, was later able to re-join the play an scored with his first touch to leave Dunloy leading 1-14 to 0-9.

Dunloy then hemmed 14-man Ballycran into their own half and picked the Down champions off at will, Elliott, McKeague, Cunning and Molloy all landing points from open play.

Dunloy had the luxury of running out their bench and just shy of the final whistle McGrath added the victors' second goal.

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