2009 Minor Panel

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Ballyhaise 0-12
Kingscourt 0-10

Eight points from county minor star Kevin Tierney helped Ballyhaise ensure their passage to the Division One Minor League final after overcoming Kingscourt at Boyle Park, Drumgoon, last Sunday afternoon.

A skilful and determined Kingscourt side kept the pressure on Ballyhaise throughout and both teams served up a game with more than enough excitement to keep the large attendance happy.

Even though the men in green and gold led for most of the match they could never establish a significant lead and the game was in the balance right up to the final whistle.

A duel between two of the best players in the county at this level, Kevin Tierney and Barry Reilly, formed the centre-piece of a hard fought match but several other players on both sides stepped up to the mark when necessary. The whole Ballyhaise defence was outstanding and they needed to be as players such as Reilly, Joe Dillon, Kevin Rogers and Terry Reilly posed a constant threat.

Tierney registered Ballyhaise’s first score with a point from a free with barely forty seconds on the clock. This score was quickly cancelled out and bettered by Kingscourt halfbacks Paul Woods and Darren McCabe who attacked from deep to score two fine points.

Christopher Reilly levelled the scores in the eighth minute after playing a nice one-two with Duirmuid Conaty. Ballyhaise suffered a set back when midfielder Shane Shorthall had to be withdrawn with an injury with just ten minutes gone but sub Eoin McGovern showed his worth with a well taken point only seconds after coming on as his replacement.

Barry Reilly levelled the scores for the third time in the half in the 17th minute and it stayed level until Tierney converted a free seven minutes later. Cian Tierney and Niall Conaty increased the Ballyhaise lead in the run up to half time but Barry Reilly was on hand to score again in first half injury time to leave the scores at the break, Ballyhaise 0-6 Kingscourt 0-4.

The second-half began with Barry Reilly narrowing the gap to the minimum with a well taken free but immediately Ballyhaise responded and Kevin Tierney was alert to receive Shane McKiernan’s quick free and put the ball over the bar.

Kevin Rogers and Tierney exchanged points before the 14th minute but at this stage Kingscourt were gaining the upper hand at midfield. Joe Dillon in particular was causing problems for the opposition and he ran through from midfield to score a point which was instantly followed by a Cian McArdle score to level the game again.

Tierney and Reilly both scored from frees as the game entered its final ten minutes and the tension mounted. Another converted free from Tierney pushed Ballyhaise into the front in the 52nd minute and the same player increased the lead to two with the score of the match a minute later.

Kingscourt were not finished though and Barry Reilly set up a nail biting last few minutes with another point in the fifty sixth minute. However, Kevin Tierney finally ensured a deserved victory for Ballyhaise with a converted ’45′ two minutes into injury time.

A disappointing end to the campaign but if the spirit shown by those togged out today remains through the Summer then there is no doubt that a serious championship run could materialise.
Ballyhaise – Stephen Colwell; Donal McGoldrick, Aidan Moran, Paul Dunne; Shane McKiernan, Francis Moore, Niall Conaty (0-1); Adam Boyle, Shane Shortall; Christopher Reilly (0-1), Kevin Tierney (0-8), John McCabe; Cian Tierney (0-1), Duirmuid Conaty, Neal Rooney. Sub used: Eoin McGovern (0-1)

Kingscourt – James Farrelly; Niall Roe, Thomas Rogers, Owen Lynch; Darren McCabe (0-1), Aidan Smith, Paul Woods (0-1); Barry Reilly (0-5), Joseph Dillon (0-1); Aaron Brown, Michael Flood, Kevin Rogers (0-1); Michael Gargan, Terry Reilly, Cian McArdle (0-1).