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2013 U21 'B' County Final

posted 13 May 2013, 13:13 by Unknown user
Floyd goal inspires combo to county title

Ballinahinch Gaels 1-06
Uppurchurch/Drombane 0-07
in Kilcommon by Cathal Ryan.
On Saturday evening, the combination side of Ballinahinch Gaels thwarted a spirited second half revival from Upperchurch-Drombane to capture the County U21 'B' Football crown.
In what proved to be testing windswept and at times damp conditions this was to be the proverbial game of two halves. The North champions seized what at the time seemed an unassailable advantage in the opening minute of the second period with the move and score of the match. A cross-field delivery from the right wing was sent to the inside forward line and bounced in front of Darragh McGrath. Instinctively the classy McGrath saw the run on the outside of Aidan Moloney who was joining the attack at pace and with a beautiful subtle flick off his palms directed the ball into the path of his teammate. Moloney then jinked inside his marker and found Pa Floyd demonstrating a similar lung bursting run to his own, through the heart of the Upperchurch defence and found him with a well weighted hand pass. Bearing down on goal Floyd had only one thought on his mind and unleashed a scorching right footed shot from just inside the 14 yard line leaving the keeper with no chance to save.
This sparked Upperchurch into action and they pressed and attacked from this moment forward. It took them a while to find the range to process their pressure into scores but began to do so at the mid way point of the second half, scoring three points in as many minutes to lift the crowd and the players alike. Ailbe O'Donoghue, Paul Shanahan and Seamus Armstrong all registered at this time and the tide seemed to well and truly to be changing. Some heroic defending from Ballinahinch in the closing stages was required but they managed to repel the charge and hold out for victory.
There will be massive celebrations for all involved in the B a l l i n a h i n c h (Ballinahinch or Newport) Gaels setup. They worked extremely hard throughout and produced a couple of fantastic scores in the opening half that paved the path to victory.
On the opposite side of the fence Upperchurch will be bitterly disappointed especially with conceding the goal so early in the second half, before they got the opportunity to create a foothold in the game with the breeze on their backs. Typically though they showed superb fighting spirit to drive on and give themselves a fighting chance in the closing minutes.
Playing with the breeze in the first half Ballinahinch exploded out of the blocks with greater zest and right corner forward Brendan Ryan opened the scoring with a right footed effort from close range. Moments later Darragh McGrath chased a ball down that had floated over both he and his marker before pivoting back onto his right foot and kicking over the bar. McGrath proved to be vital to the Gaels cause as he also converted two first half frees to keep the scoreboard ticking over, aligned with this point from play and was a constant threat.
Late in the first half Aidan Moloney displayed his prowess scoring two points, the pick of these, the second where he picked up possession 60-yards from the target and soloed forward before unleashing a towering right footed kick from 50-yards with sniper like accuracy. It took the 'Church' a while to produce anything in attack but in the closing minutes of the half James Murray kicked over a right footed effort to register their first score and leave the half time scores at 0-6 to 0-1. The goal catapulted the Gaels well ahead but this was to be their last score of the contest and for the next 29 minutes had to focus on keeping the opposition at bay. This was going to be difficult as the breeze and fighting spirit of Upperchurch was a tough storm to protect against. James Murray registered a free to set the revival on track before three terrific points from O'Donoghue, Shanahan and Armstrong put them within range. In the closing stages Ballinahinch done a fantastic job of defending the scoring area in front of goal from 40-yards in and restricted the men in black and yellow to nothing more than two Paul Shanahan frees leaving victory in their hands and the cup in the hands of captain Joe Conneely.
Match Digest
Man of the Match: Darragh McGrath (Ballinahinch Gaels)
Scorers - Ballinahinch Gaels: Darragh McGrath, 0-3, 2 frees; Pa Floyd 1-0; Aidan Moloney 0-2; Brendan Ryan 0-). Upperchurch: Paul Shanahan 0-3, 2 frees; James Murray 0-2, 1 free; Seamus Armstrong, Ailbe O'Donoghue 0-1 each.

Ballinahinch Gaels: RJ Ryan (6); Paddy Kelly (8), Joe Conneely (Capt, 7), Robert Houlihan (6); Conor Floyd (7), John Ryan Bawn (7), James O'Connor (6); Kevin Mulcahy (6), Martin Carey (8); Pa Ryan (7), Odhran Floyd (6), Aidan Moloney (8); Brendan Ryan (6), Pa Floyd (7), Darragh McGrath (8). SUBS: Blaine Lenihan (6) for Mulcahy (ht); David Ryan (6) for P Floyd (50); Frank Troy (NR) for B Ryan (56); Kevin Fitzpatrick (NR) for Carey (60). James Healy, Thomas Kennedy.
Upperchurch/Drombane: Gavin Ryan (6); Ronan Gleeson (6), Tommy Stevens (7), Nathon Delaney (6); Ger Grant (8), John Ryan J (6), Toby Clancy (6); Seamus Armstrong (Capt, 7), Ailbe O'Donoghue (7); Dylan Sheridan (6), Paul Shanahan (8), PJ Bourke (6); Robert Murray (6), Ciaran Shortt (7), James Murray (7). SUB: Diarmaid Grant (6) for Sheridan (43).
Referee: Brian Tyrell (Clonmel Commercials)