Shanballymore 2-18 Ballygiblin 0-13.
We went in to the Ballygiblin game knowing that we had to up our performance from our last match against Newtown which ended in a loss. Last year Ballygiblin came to Shanballymore and beat us well so we knew that it was going to be a difficult task to get anything from this game. From the start they drove at our defence and had three points on board before we had hit the 5min mark.
Jamie Sheedy had our first score from a free to settle our nerves but Ballygiblin answered immediately with a free of their own from distance. Jamie again answered this with one from play when he found space after being set up by Rob McHugh. Ballygiblin who had a very good free taker punished us again when he put one over from the 21yrd line. We had a few chances to close the gap but unfortunately these chances trailed wide or dropped short in to the keeper who was fast off his line to collect.
With 20 mins gone and trailing 0-5 to 0-2 we would have to put in a busy last ten minutes to the half as Ballygiblin were threatening to stretch their lead with some good play around the middle where they had some very good players. Thankfully we started to get on top and with our inside back line of Eoin McHugh, Alan Sheedy and Richard Burke now dominating this closed off the dangerous Ballygiblin attack, outside them our halfbacks Sean Lynch, Eoin O’Regan and Niall Barry were outstanding and cleared a fierce amount of ball to our forwards who started to get on top and motor as they are well capable of.
We hit back with three excellent points on the bounce with two coming from the hard working and impressive Haulie Burke who was accompanied in midfield by Rob McHugh who is improving with every game. Colman O’Reilly pitched in with a beauty from a tight angle to draw us level with half time approaching and we took the lead for the first time in the match with a very well taken point by Jamie Sheedy when he was picked out with a beautiful pass from Eamonn Fitzgerald who put in a very hard working first half in full forward.
Ballygiblin replied with one from play but we finished the half strongly when Brian Sheedy was fouled after going on a great run and Jamie Sheedy duly obliged and slotted the free over to see us lead by a point at the short whistle.We had a slight wind at our backs in the second half and were playing into the village end goals and we started the half with conviction and had the first point from a Jamie Sheedy free after Brian O’Reilly was fouled after a great catch from a Stephen Donegan puck out.
Ballygiblon pulled one back when they had their seventh point but we then had the first goal of the day when a high ball from out of defense by Eoin McHugh was knocked on by Colman O’Reilly and when the ball fell inside the Ballygiblin defence Kenneth Barry was on hand to slot the ball home to give us a four point lead. We now had the upper hand and a minute later Alan Sheedy played a excellent pass out of defence which was slotted over by Kenneth Barry to stretch the lead to five points with twenty minutes left.
We lost Eamon Fitzgerald to a leg injury shortly after and he was replaced by Vincent Burke who got on a lot of ball after coming on. Ballygiblin in fairness rallied well and had the next two points to close the gap to three and stay in touch. We then hit a real purple patch and had three very good points from Jamie Sheedy, Eoin O’Regan and the hard working Brian O’Reilly.
Ballygiblin replied with a point from a free but the we had our second goal when a great move down the right wing saw Sean Lynch and Brian O’Reilly combine to pick out Colman O’Reilly who went on a mazy run before picking out Vincent Burke who found Kenneth Barry with a brilliant pass and he blasted to the net from close range to give us a commanding eight point lead 2-12 to 0-10 with ten minutes remaining.
Ballygiblin had a pointed free in reply but we had three quick points on the trot with two from Brian Sheedy and one from Brian O’Reilly. Our forward line were now well on top and working very hard closing down the Ballygiblin backs and easing the pressure on our back line who have in previous games being over worked. Ballygiblin had two points one from a free and one from play but these were answered by some excellent scores from Haulie Burke and Jamie Sheedy from play.
With a commanding lead going into the last few minutes it was a case of just seeing the game out and our back line again were outstanding to the last minute with nothing getting through to our goalie Stephen Donegan who again kept his goals intact with a very experienced display of goalkeeping throughout the game. Ballygiblin had their 13th and last point with time almost up but from the resulting puck out the ball was fed to Vincent Burke who found himself in space and split the posts from an acute angle after good work from substitute Shaun Cronin.
This was the last play of the game and we had put in a very impressive display to take the league points on offer and make it two wins from three games. This was a great win against a very good Ballygiblin team who like ourselves were missing a few very important players. Going into the game last Sunday we had Jerome Fitzgerald, Padraig Fitzgerald, Paul Burke, Dylan O’Callaghan, Darren Roche and Declan Fitzgibbon all on the injured list and we were also missing Jonathan Dennehy, Mick O’Donovan and James Hayes who were away so when all these lads return again competition for places will be fierce.
Team: Stephen Donegan, Alan Sheedy, Eoin McHugh, Richard Burke, Eoin O’Regan(0-1), Sean Lynch, Niall Barry, Robert McHugh, Haulie Burke(0-4), Brian O’Reilly(0-2), Brian Sheedy(0-2), Kenneth Barry(2-1), Eamon Fitzgerald, Colman O’Reilly(0-1), Jamie Sheedy(0-6),: Subs: Vincent Burke(0-1) for Eamon Fitzgerald inj, Shaun Cronin for Kenneth Barry, Jerome Fitzgerald, Dave Twomey, Brian O’Regan.