West Mayo Under 14B Championship Final Thursday July 14th
Kilmeena 5-18 8-8 Ballintubber
If ever those who subscribe to the notion that Gaelic football is gone all defensive and negative should have been in a murky,damp Westport on Thursday evening when a game as open as you could ever see was witnessed. Two very determined Under 14 teams took to the field and gave all those present a game that will stick in the memory for a long time. Such a high scoring game resulted in reporters and officials totting up records from the game before Kilmeena were deemed winners after referee Mel Kenny verified his records. It was heartbreak for the Abbeysiders who deserved at least another evening out but the occasion may indeed stand to them in the future. Ballintubber started brightly with star full-forward Robbie Finnerty bagging the first of the games many goals. A fine pointed free from midfielder Caobhlin Flately saw the boys in red push further out in front before a purple patch for the coastal side who racked up 1-3 in the space of 3 minutes to suddenly lead 1-4 to 1-1. Ballintubber captain and ‘keeper Diarmuid Heneghan had to be smart to prevent a second goal before Robbie Finnerty at the other end hammered a rocket off the Kilmeena crossbar although he eventually got the ball back to point. The speedy full-forward then kicked a long range point before he scored his second goal of the evening this time from a penalty with one of the shortest run-ups to convert. Back came Kilmeena to reduce the deficit to just one point at 2-3 to 1-5 before the boys of the ‘tubber played their best football of the match. Midfielder Bobby Reilly came into his own as he carried the ball from deep to blast the ball to the roof of the net and the same player only minutes later had a rasper saved before he calmly left-footed his second goal to the net. It suddenly saw the score at 4-4 to 1-6 and try as they might Kilmeena could not stop the Ballintubber momentum. A shrewd move saw left-corner-back Damien Jennings moved into the opposite end of the field to top of the right and within minutes the switch reaped dividends as he added 2 more goals to the Abbeysiders remarkable goal haul to push his side 6-5 to 1-7 ahead at the interval.
The second half saw Kilmeena play with the wind and they kept tapping over the points although a Caobhlin Flately pointed free along with a third goal from Damien Jennings still had the boys in red well ahead at 7-6 to 1-9. But the tide was turning as point after point followed and when Kilmeena scored their second goal it gave massive belief to the side and its large support. Remarkably the dominance continued with a third goal this time from the penalty spot and the game was still alive as Ballintubber still led at 7-7 to 3-12. Further pressure yielded a fourth goal although a point from Robbie Finnerty still gave advantage to the Abbeysiders at 7-8 to 4-13 but wave after wave of Kilmeena attacks continued. They added a further 1-1 to suddenly level the game as their understandably vocal support realised the game was level where another attack saw them go ahead. Despite been outplayed for long periods of the second half, the Ballintubber boys gave one last massive effort and managed to get the games last goal thanks to persistence from Robbie Finnerty with the score now 8-8 to 5-15. But credit to the victors as they pointed 3 more times to break the hearts of a very game Ballintubber side who will have better days. Best for Ballintubber were goalkeeper and captain Diarmuid Heneghan who kept Ballintubber in the game with a string of fine saves. Josh Mahon at full-back is another to watch out for while Ciaran Heneghan played well before been harshly black-carded towards the end of the game. Darragh and Cillian Joyce in the half-back line also showed well while centre-half-back Sean McEvilly was another to impress. The midfield partnership of Caobhlin Flately and Bobby Reilly put in a huge effort throughout the hour with a combined return of 2-4 between them. The half-forward line of Matthew Coyne, James King and Stephen Burke may not have gotten on the scoreboard but they contributed to the many scoring chances during the match and will get their chance again. While Robbie Finnerty was the only star man in the attack with a total return of 3-4 including a penalty with Nathan Gibbons and Dean O’Malley giving their all. A special mention also to Damien Jennings who proved that corner-backs can be as dangerous in the opposite position where his hat-trick of goals was another highlight. A special mention that the enjoyable evening was some what hampered by the lack of a scoreboard as surely Divisional finals should not be played at a venue unless something as basic as that is available.
Ballintubber team that lined out : Diarmuid Heneghan (Capt), Ciaran Heneghan, Josh Mahon, Damien Jennings (3-0), Darragh Joyce, Sean McEvilly, Cillian Joyce, Caobhlin Flately (0-3,3f), Bobby Reilly (2-1,f), Matthew Coyne, James King, Stephen Burke, Nathan Gibbons, Robbie Finnerty (3-4,pen), Dean O’Malley. Subs used – Luke Biggins, James Lally, Noah Corbett, Colm Larkin.
County Junior A Championship Saturday July 2nd
Ballintubber B 2-8 2-12 Ballycastle
Our Junior team exited the Championship on Saturday evening when a strong second half performance from the visitors saw them book a place in the knock-out stages. After a tremendous start to the Championship campaign against one of the favourites Kilmeena only a few weeks back, defeats against Killala and now Ballycastle puts the Abbeysiders in to the relegation mire to stay at this level. On a sunny, breezy evening in Clogher, the hosts were slow to get into their groove and were 3 down before a long range free from midfielder Daire Summerville got the Abbeysiders on the board. In fact the North Mayo side went 0-5 to 0-2 ahead after captain John Duffy got his first of the evening. The experienced Ray Geraghty reduced the deficit to just 2 points with a well taken point. Then in the space of minutes the game was turned on its head when a hopefully John Duffy high ball was not dealt with by the Ballycastle defence with the alert Dave Clarke on hand to rifle the ball to the corner of the net and suddenly the game was level. Further pressure from the hosts saw them go ahead for the first time courtesy of John Duffy. However at the other end a breakaway attack yielded a penalty for the visitors but the well struck shot hit the post and was cleared away. As the interval was approaching good work from substitute Jarleth Staunton saw John Duffy again in the scoring zone which he confidently slotted over to leave the half-time score 1-5 to 0-5 to the homeside.
The wind was now with Ballycastle for the second half and immediately they started to plough high ball into the Ballintubber defence with immediate success as they levelled the game with their first goal. This started a purple patch for the North Mayo side and they added 2 points before getting a second penalty which was well despatched to suddenly see them 2-7 to 1-5 in front early in the second half. A Ray Geraghty free broke the momentum slightly but 3 further points almost had them over the line. However the boys of the ‘tubber were given a brief glimmer of hope when a high ball towards Dave Clarke at full-forward saw him avail of a save from the Ballycastle ‘keeper to kick the ball into the net to leave just 4 between the sides at 2-6 to 2-10. When Dean Loftus added another point suddenly the game was still on. But 2 further points from Ballycastle saw the finish out deserving winners although Dean Loftus did point the last score of the match from a free. Ballintubber could meet either Kilfian, Swinford B or Charlestown B in the relegation play-off with details to be confirmed.
Ballintubber team that lined out : Frank Walsh, John Kerrigan, Declan Larkin, Sean Staunton, Gavin Roache, Sean Larkin, Seamus Thomas, David McHale, Daire Summerville (0-1), Eoin Heneghan, Dean Loftus (0-2,1f), Dave Clarke (2-0), Darragh McGovern, Ray Geraghty (0-2,1f), John Duffy Capt (0-3). Subs used – Jarleth Staunton for Eoin Heneghan (inj)
Senior League Division 1A Sunday June 19th
Charlestown Sarsfields 1-7 3-7 Ballintubber
Our Senior team maintained their push for League honours after a deserved win in wet and windy Charlestown on Sunday. A blistering opening half saw the Abbeysiders bag 3 goals in the first 15 minutes and play some fine passages of football. Goals from Conor Finnerty, Bryan Walsh and Alan Plunkett saw the visitors race out of the blocks where Diarmuid O’Connor incidentally played the first 30 minutes. Points from Alan Plunkett (2) and 2 frees from Damien McGing saw the boys in red 3-4 to 0-6 ahead at the break. Substitute Stephen Finnerty opened the second half scoring following a pointed free and things looked even better when another substitute Dean Loftus scored his sides 4th goal although it was later found out that the goal was disallowed with little indication of this on the pitch. Conditions worsened in the second half which resulted in few enough scoring opportunities although Damien McGing kicked the games best point from the left side while he also pointed another free. Before the end Charlestown were awarded a penalty which was well converted by full-forward Colm Maye while the hosts kicked over a final point to leave 6 points between the sides. Best for Ballintubber included Cathal Hallinan at full-back while Brian Murphy, Myles Kelly and Kevin Shannon also stood out. Danny Geraghty and Stephen Broderick impressed in midfield while the full-forward line of Damien McGing, Alan Plunkett and Conor Finnerty racked up 2-6 and always looked menacing especially in the opening half. The win pushes Ballintubber back to the top of Division 1A on scoring difference from Hollymount-Carramore where next Saturday evening sees our Senior team play their second Championship game in Clogher when Charlestown make the return journey at 5.30 in a must-win game for the Abbeysiders.
Ballintubber team that lined out : Brendan Walsh, Gary Loftus, Cathal Hallinan, Myles Kelly, Kevin Shannon, Brian Murphy, Ruaidhri O’Connor, Danny Geraghty, Stephen Broderick, Diarmuid O’Connor, Ray Geraghty, Bryan Walsh (1-0), Damien McGing (0-4, 3f), Alan Plunkett (1-2), Conor Finnerty (1-0). Subs used : Dean Loftus for Diarmuid O’Connor, Stephen Finnerty (0-1, 1f) for Bryan Walsh, Joe Geraghty for Gary Loftus, Declan Larkin for Kevin Shannon, Eoin Vahey for Conor Finnerty, John Duffy for Ray Geraghty.
County Junior A Championship Group 3 June 11th
Kilmeena 2-8 2-10 Ballintubber B
Our Junior team began their 2016 Championship campaign with a cracking win in Kilmeena on Saturday evening when a tremendous second half comeback was rewarded. The Abbeysiders were 1-6 to 0-4 down at the break and also lost captain Eoghan Vahey who was black carded. On an almost perfect evening near the coast where in cloudy, calm conditions, the crowd seen some of the best of Mayo Junior football as both teams gave it everything. The hosts began in impressive fashion as it only took 20 seconds for them to open the scoring. The visitors however had other ideas and the accurate Conor Finnerty levelled the game shortly after from the right wing with his left peg. Further pressure from the ‘tubber yielded a free where Stephen O’Malley kicked his first of the evening. Kilmeena however looked menacing as their fast movement at times had Ballintubber defenders catching air and it was no surprise that they levelled shortly after. In fact this pressure was to result in further dividends as Kilmeena were awarded a penalty which was well converted and another swift point followed. Suddenly the boys of the ‘tubber were in further trouble when captain Eoghan Vahey was black carded with Dean Loftus coming in to replace. Fortunately indiscipline in the Kilmeena defence saw Stephen O’Malley point from distance this time from the ground. Unfortunately further attacks from the homeside saw their full-forward score twice while the number 11 also got on the scoreboard although another Stephen O’Malley free kept the Abbeysiders in touch at the break with halftime score Kilmeena 1-6 0-4 Ballintubber B.
The second half saw a rejuvenated Ballintubber side take to the field although Kilmeena scored yet again in the opening minute to push their lead further out in front. However with the influential Ray Geraghty who was brought out to the ’40, Ballintubber’s game began to develop. It was the prompting of Conor Finnerty that started the comeback as he pointed from the right wing with Ray Geraghty next to score. With the impressive John Kerrigan, Seamus Thomas, Gavin Roache and centre-half-back Kevin Shannon keeping things tighter in defence along with selfless work from midfielder Daire Summerville, the momentum was with the visitors. Another excellent point from Conor Finnerty reduced the deficit to just 3 points when the key Kilmeena player wearing 15 was sent off for an off the ball incident with Stephen O’Malley . This added to the visitors drive and when the afore mentioned Stephen O’Malley kicked his only point from play following an accurate pass from Ray Geraghty there were suddenly just 2 scores in the game. A brief attack from the homeside saw their number 6 push his side 3 points out in front again. Again this was a temporary blip and Stephen O’Malley pointed from another free and when the same player benefitted from a Dean Loftus pass it saw Ballintubber get its first goal and the lead for only the second time. With panic in the Kilmeena ranks it saw them loose possession easily in the next play with Ray Geraghty scoring his sides second goal with Ballintubber now 4 points ahead at 2-9 to 1-8. With time running out Kilmeena had to dig deep and in fairness they bagged their second goal to keep the game alive. Thankfully a fine point from the experienced John Duffy saw Ballintubber get a second big win in a week and really kick-start their season. Next up in the Championship is their only home game when Ballycastle come again to Clogher with fixture details to be confirmed. Others to catch the eye included Eoin Heneghan who worked hard and made one of the catches of the day in the second half while Dave Clarke was providing extra cover in defence before suffering from injury. While his replacement Jarleth Staunton calmly acted as the extra player in defence particularly during the hectic final moments.
Ballintubber team that lined out : Frank Walsh, John Kerrigan, Declan Larkin, Seamus Thomas, Gavin Roache, Kevin Shannon, Dave Clarke, Eoghan Vahey (Capt), Daire Summerville, Eoghan Heneghan, John Duffy (0-1), David McHale, Stephen O’Malley (1-5, 4f), Ray Geraghty (1-1), Conor Finnerty (0-3). Subs used : Dean Loftus for Eoghan Vahey, Jarleth Staunton for Dave Clarke (inj), Daire McGovern for Eoin Heneghan
Senior League Division 1D Saturday June 4th
Ballintubber B 0-13 1-5 Balla
Our Junior team put in their best performance of the Division 1D League campaign following a more than convincing 5 points win over Balla in balmy Clogher on Saturday evening. The fact that Ballintubber had to play most of the game with only 14 players and still run out comfortable winners added to the interest. As with local derbies there certainly were plenty of incidents and the sending-off of Ballintubber full-back Gary Loftus seemed controversial. However the boys of the ‘tubber playing in their alternative white strip played some fantastic football particularly in the second half. The hosts were able to field their strongest team although early on it was the visitors who looked more impressive. With Mayo under 21 ‘keeper Matthew Flanagan lining out at full-forward for Balla he opened the scoring with a pointed free. A direct high ball to full-forward Eoghan Vahey saw Eoin Heneghan kick over his sides levelling point from a free and when John Duffy kicked over a fine long distant point it pushed the homeside out in front. But a sending off then followed when Gary Loftus was shown red for something the referee seen and when Balla levelled and then pushed on with a fine goal it was looking ominous for the Abbeysiders. When the visitors scored again with a pointed free it suddenly put 4 points between the teams at 1-3 to 0-2. At times like this you really find out who your leaders are and the boys in white kicked over 4 points in quick succession to level. With Stephen Broderick controlling the Ballintubber strings, it allowed Stephen Finnerty and Conor Finnerty (2) to kick over some classy points from distance while further pressure yielded a pointed free from Eoin Heneghan to level at 0-6 to 1-3. Just before the half ended Balla kicked over the last score of the half to lead at the break.
Despite being a players down the Abbeysiders played some fantastic football in the second half where the youthful Gavin Roache came from the half-back-line to earn a free after his was tripped with the accurate Eoin Heneghan levelling the match at 0-7 to 1-4. Further raids into the Balla half saw a sharp pass from Gavin Roache to Stephen Finnerty which saw the nifty wing forward kick over a fine point to put his side out in front again. The next point came from the impressive Conor Finnerty when he pointed with his left foot while it was back to Stephen Finnerty on the right wing for Ballintubber’s 10th point. It looked more like Ballintubber had the extra player such was their dominance although Balla did kick over the next point to reduce the lead to 0-10 to 1-5. But their was no stopping the Abbeysiders and when playmaker Stephen Broderick kicked over his own point it gave Ballintubber the extra cushion of a 3 points lead. The games final scores came from substitute Daire Summerville (long distant free) while another substitute Damien McGing kicked over the games last point following a rebound after the Balla goalkeeper had made a fine stop from the penalty spot. The result puts Ballintubber into the promotion reckoning again as they are just 2 points behind leaders Knockmore B with 4 games to go. There were a number of fine performances all over the field where Joe Geraghty impressed when switched to full-back where he had loads of help from John Kerrigan and Seamus Thomas in the corners. Kevin Shannon and teenager Gavin Roache impressed in the half-back-line while the midfield pairing of Danny Geraghty and Stephen Broderick got through a lot of work. It was the attack that really worked well where the Finnerty cousins Conor & Stephen used their pace and accuracy to good effect as they kicked 0-3 apiece. With Bryan Walsh and John Duffy working hard around it created extra scoring opportunities for those inside. In the full-forward line Eoghan Vahey was ideal target man inside at 14 with Eoin Heneghan also showing well while kicking over 3 important frees. At number 15 Conor Finnerty seems to be coming into a bit of form if his performance was anything to go by following his 3 excellent points. While the substitutes of Damien McGing and Daire Summerville who both contributed to the scoreboard were an added bonus with Alan Larkin also introduced before the end.
Ballintubber team that lined out : Frank Walsh, John Kerrigan, Gary Loftus, Seamus Thomas, Joe Geraghty, Kevin Shannon, Gavin Roache, Danny Geraghty, Stephen Broderick (0-1), Stephen Finnerty (0-3), Bryan Walsh, John Duffy (0-1), Eoin Heneghan (0-3,3f), Eoghan Vahey, Conor Finnerty (0-3). Subs used : Damien McGing (0-1) for Eoin Heneghan, Daire Summerville (0-1) for Gavin Roache, Alan Larkin for John Duffy
Senior League Division 1A Saturday May 21st
Ballintubber 0-10 0-5 Breaffy
Our Senior team are top of Divison 1A following a deserved win over rivals Breaffy on Saturday evening. On an evening where no county players were allowed to play for their clubs, the Abbeysiders played with a passion that was sadly missing the previous weekend in the Championship. The fact that Breaffy put Ballintubber out at the Senior Championship semi-final stage last year added to the mix with some sturdy challenges throughout the hour. The hosts were able to welcome back Stephen Broderick to the team along with the shrewd positioning of Michael Plunkett to full-forward which seemed to add a directness to their play. Damien Coleman added another layer of defence to the team as he played in front of the full-back line and proved to be key player on the evening. After a day of heavy showers, the pitch in Clogher did contain flashes of water where it was the hosts captained by Damien Coleman who led the way. It was the lively Bryan Walsh who opened the scoring with 2 frees following early attacks from the homeside on a sunny evening. Back came Breaffy wearing their ‘QPR’ strip to level within minutes as a Liam Irwin free along with a Peter Dravins free saw the sides level. With the boys in red battling for every ball as if their lives depended on it, it was the always alert Stephen Broderick who brought another dimension to the game. Within minutes he pointed the first point from play and he followed it up with a second score following a vital ball win from right-half-back Kevin Shannon. The visitors did respond with a point of their own but that was quickly responded to by good build up play from midfielder Danny Geraghty who found Michael Plunkett inside with the new full-forward calmly pointing. Indeed some of the play from the hosts did warrant more but it was indiscipline in defence which gave Liam Irwin another free which he converted well. With the score 0-5 to 0-4 in favour of the hosts, it took one of the scores of the game from Bryan Walsh who took the initiative and let fly by kicking from distance. While Breaffy were getting their hands on a lot of ball the Ballintubber defence was immense on the evening although the visitors did score once more before the break with a final Liam Irwin free. As the half ended it was fitting that the games top scorer Bryan Walsh pointed again with his third free to leave the half-time score 0-7 to 0-5.
The second half was a more laboured affair as both teams tried to cancel each other out and it was the influential Stephen Broderick who pointed his third score following a patient move. Breaffy did try to break down the Ballintubber defence but the full-back line of Gary Loftus, Cathal Hallinan and Brian Murphy would not surrender while Frank Walsh in goal dealt with a lot of ball flying around in front of him. With more Ballintubber players coming back to defend it meant more space for right-half-forward Stephen Finnerty who hit a rocket to the Breaffy post before getting the rebound and point to push his side 4 in front. Another breakaway attack saw the Ballintubber number 10 fouled and he pointed the games final free as and despite further Breaffy attacks they could not break through. The half-back line of Kevin Shannon, Joe Geraghty and Myles Kelly were also outstanding and were not found wanting. In fact the Abbeysiders defence held Breaffy scoreless in the second half and when referee Garryowen McMahon blew his final whistle the boys from the ‘tubber were the deserved winners. The midfield pairing of Ruaidhri O’Connor and Danny Geraghty also worked hard and provided a lot of ball to the inside line where the win pushes Ballintubber to the top of the League out on their own.
Ballintubber team that lined out : Frank Walsh, Gary Loftus, Cathal Hallinan, Brian Murphy, Kevin Shannon, Joe Geraghty, Myles Kelly, Ruaidhri O’Connor, Danny Geraghty, Stephen Finnerty (0-2,1f), Stephen Broderick (0-3), Bryan Walsh (0-4,3f), Damien Coleman (Capt), Michael Plunkett (0-1), Conor Finnerty. Subs used : Padraig O’Connor for Conor Finnerty, David McHale for Stephen Finnerty
Senior Championship Group 2 Saturday May 14th
Ballintubber 0-11 3-3 Hollymount/Carramore
Our Senior suffered a surprise defeat in the opening round of the Senior Championship in sunny Clogher on Saturday evening when last years Intermediate Champions Hollymount/Carramore held out to claim the vital win. The 2014 winners never really opened up the visitors and the concession of 3 goals throughout the hour came back to haunt them. A large crowd attended where exchanges were intense on the field as local bragging rights were also at stake. However it was the South Mayo side who were the better team in the opening half and could have been more ahead but for some wayword shooting . The sides began with a pointed free apiece from Darren Coen and Cillian O’Connor respectively before the games opening goal. It was a created by an astute pass from Darren Coen who spotted the onrushing Kevin Costello where he calmly slotted the ball to the Ballintubber net. The hosts responded with a goal attempt of their own when Alan Plunkett’s effort was well saved by Niall Campbell in the Hollymount/Carramore net. An excellently pointed ’45 from Cillian O’Connor resulted and when Bryan Walsh added a third score for his side it looked as if Ballintubber had settled. But indicipline saw Darren Coen point 2 long range frees which suddenly had the visitors ahead 1-3 to 0-3 even though the West Mayo side did have a number of missed scoring opportunities . Despite struggling for long periods Ballintubber kept at it and again had Bryan Walsh to thank when he ended a patient move with another fine point and before the break Cillian O’Connor pointed his second free to leave just the minimum between the teams at the interval Ballintubber 0-5 1-3 Hollymount/Carramore .
A strong second half was expected from the homeside and when Bryan Walsh was hauled to the ground Cillian O’Connor competently pointed the resultant free to level the game for only the second time. But when Ballintubber lost possession at the other end of the ground it saw the games defining moment develop when 2 goals were scored in as many minutes and suddenly the game looked as if could be out of reach. Behind 3-3 to 0-6 the Abbeysiders had to try to claw their way back where the introduction of Alan Dillon from the bench certainly created more opportunities. Further pressure from the Abbeysiders saw them win a host of frees where Cillian O’Connor pointed 4 in a row and when Alan Dillon turned back the clock to kick over an excellent point from a difficult angle it was suddenly game on with the clock ticking. With the game now 0-11 to 3-3 it saw the hosts throw everything at the Hollymount/Carramore rearguard but the equalising point never arrived. It was heartbreak for the ‘tubber boys and they now have to do it the hard way to book a place in the last 8 with wins over Charlestown (h) and Aghamore (a) which will be no easy target. Since Ballintubber became Senior in 2008 they have a remarkable record of at least getting to the knockout stages on each season since, however that record could be in serious danger. Thankfully that decision is still in Ballintubber’s control but the drive needed to achieve that must return. 2 years ago the same fate fell to this team when Castlebar Mitchels gave our Senior team a lesson and they responded in spades by winning back the Senior title plus all the honours in the County. Next Saturday evening at 7pm they have a chance to get their season back on track when Breaffy come to Clogher for round 4 of the Senior League in their first meeting since last years County Semi-Final which should still be raw in the players memories.
Mayo Senior League Division 1A Sunday April 24th
Ballintubber 1-16 1-7 Kiltane
Our Senior team made it 2 wins out of 2 in Division 1A when they comfortably overcome Kiltane in unseasonal cold,showery conditions in Clogher on Sunday. This was the best performance from the Abbeysiders for some considerable time as they looked hungry and sharp with some of their scores a joy to watch . Despite not having the Mayo Under 21 contingent along Damien McGing ‘keeper Brendan Walsh and Ray Geraghty, the hosts sprayed the ball around the field and probably should have been more than the 0-9 to 0-2 half-time lead. Ballintubber had 5 different scorers in the opening half such was their play while Danny Geraghty and Jason Gibbons controlled around the middle. It was the impressive Padraig O’Connor who opened the scoring while the fit-again Bryan Walsh also got off the mark. Full-forward Cillian O’Connor was the games top scorer with a total of 7 points with many coming from pointed frees following indisciplined Kiltane play. Further scores came from Alan Plunkett and Damien Coleman along with more pointed frees from Cillian O’Connor booked the half-time lead. The only downside to the half was the injury to Alan Dillon who seemed to pull up midway through the half with a leg injury.
The second half was much of the same as the boys of the ‘tubber continued their dominance where Bryan Walsh added to this sharp opening half performance with a second score as the West Mayo side were rampant. With Brian Murphy starring in the full-back line along with Gary Loftus and Declan Larkin, the crowd present were waiting for Ballintubber to open up the Kiltane defence but credit to the visitors they held bay for long periods. More classy points from Padraig O’Connor, Bryan Walsh and Cillian O’Connor put more daylight between the teams at 0-16 to 0-4 before a brief Kiltane comeback when they scored 1-3. Indeed Ballintubber had Frank Walsh in goal to thank following a fine penalty save although Bryan Walsh put a gloss to the scoreline with his sides only goal minutes before the end to finish off an impressive shift. It should be noted that Kiltane were without the influential Mickie Sweeney who was suspended. There will be no League games next weekend on account of the Mayo Under 21’s in the All-Ireland final next Saturday evening in Ennis. Others to impress included the half-back-line of Joe Geraghty, Cathal Hallinan and Ruaidhri O’Connor who helped set up the many chances throughout the hour.
Ballintubber team that lined out : Frank Walsh, Gary Loftus, Brian Murphy, Declan Larkin, Joe Geraghty, Cathal Hallinan, Ruaidhri O’Connor, Danny Geraghty, Jason Gibbons, Damien Coleman (0-1), Alan Dillon, Bryan Walsh (1-3), Alan Plunkett (0-1), Cillian O’Connor (0-7,6f), Padraig O’Connor (0-4). Subs used : Eoghan Vahey for Alan Dillon (inj), David McHale for Damien Coleman
Mayo Senior League Division 1D Sunday April 10th
Breaffy B 1-9 1-12 Ballintubber B
Our Junior team began life back in Division 1D with a hard-working win over neighbours Breaffy in blustery conditions on Sunday. With local bragging rights at stake the game did have a few minor scuffles but it turned out that a well-taken goal by wing-back Seamus Thomas midway through the second half turned out to be the difference. In fact the hosts Breaffy led at the break 1-6 to 0-8 despite playing into a strengthening yet it was a stronger second half from the 'tubber that garnered the League points. There were a number of fine performances all over the field and new Manager Tommy Kilcoyne will no doubt have been satisfied with what he seen. The game was going well for the visitors after points from full-forward Padraig O'Connor (3 including a '45) as well as a fine strike from Conor Finnerty which saw the boys in their alternative white strip race into a 0-4 to 0-2 lead. But their good work was disrupted when against the run of play Breaffy scored a fortunate goal to push them in front. The half continued with both teams having their spells of dominance where the Ballintubber midfield of Michael Hoban and Eoghan Vahey guaranteed decent supply of ball into the full-forward with Conor Finnerty scoring 2 points in quick succession. A long distant point from Eoghan Vahey was added to by the fast moving Eoin Heneghan to push the Abbeysiders 0-8 to 1-4 heading towards half-time. However 2 late points saw Breaffy edge the half at 1-6 to 0-8.
The second half continued in the same vein as Breaffy again opened the scoring, however a raft of fine points from Padraig O’Connor (f), the hard-working Darren Flannerty along with a smart point from substitute Aaron Lally saw Ballintubber push out in front thanks to the excellently taken goal from the travelling Seamus Thomas. However the Abbeysiders did suffer a setback when the influential Michael Hoban was black-carded during this spell but the boys defended resolutely. While the homeside kept plugging away and did reduce the leeway with a pointed free, full-back Sean Larkin came all the way up the field to finish off a patient move from the visitors to leave 4 between the teams at 1-12 to 1-8. With the clock ticking Breaffy went for goal but it only brought out the best in goalkeeper Frank Walsh who pulled off a fine stop at the expense of a ’45. The boys in the QPR strip did point the games last score but the result was never in doubt after Seamus Thomas’s goal. Best for Ballintubber included Sean Larkin at full-back and the alert John Kerrigan in the corner along with the goal scoring hero Seamus Thomas while Alan Larkin also had his moments. Eoghan Vahey did a lot of unselfish work in midfield as he complimented the good work of the battling Michael Hoban. In attack it was good to see Daire Summerville back as he was involved in creating a number of key scores with the full-forward line scoring 0-8 of the total where Padraig O’Connor proving he hasn’t lost his free-taking ability with a number of fine strikes including trademark ’45. Conor Finnerty also showed what he can do with 3 fine points in the opening half with the sharp looking Eoin Heneghan as he kicked over an excellent point in the first half. Both wing forwards worked hard with Darren Flannery pointing and winning a few crucial frees while substitute Aaron Lally did his cause for a start in the next game no harm with an impressive introduction.
Ballintubber team that lined out – Frank Walsh, Sean Staunton, Sean Larkin, (0-1), John Kerrigan, Seamus Thomas (1-0), Kevin Shannon, Alan Larkin, Michael Hoban, Eoghan Vahey (0-1), Darren Flannery (0-1), Daire Summerville, David McHale, Conor Finnerty (0-3), Padraig O’Connor (0-4, ’45 & 2f), Eoin Heneghan (0-1). Sub used – Aaron Lally for Michael Hoban (black card)
Mayo Senior League Division 1A Saturday April 9th
Knockmore 1-7 1-8 Ballintubber
Our Senior team had to battle to gain the 2 opening League points on offer in Knockmore on Saturday evening when a Cillian O’Connor pointed free in injury time proved to be the difference. With the Mayo Under 21’s in All-Ireland Semi-Final action next Saturday it meant that no Diarmuid O’Connor or Michael Plunkett were available while Alan Plunkett who was part of the successful Mayo teachers team that won the All-Ireland Inter-Firms earlier in the day was also not available. On a calm evening in the back pitch, it was the visitors who kicked over their opening point of the 2016 League courtesy of a fine point from the busy Ruaidhri O’Connor. However the lead was shortlived as the homeside settled quickly to score 3 points in quick succession. Exchanges between the sides were very physical on a sometimes heavy pitch with a converted Cillian O’Connor free the next major score. Indeed the Abbeysiders were gaining a foothold on the game, however it was a mistake from Knockmore ‘Keeper Aidan Kilcoyne with a hasty kickout with the alert Padraig O’Connor was on hand to blast the ball to the roof of the Knockmore net. Unfortunately the lead only lasted for a few minutes before the hosts managed to squeeze through the Ballintubber defence to bag their only goal. This was to be the last time they would lead the game as both Cillian O’Connor and Damien McGing kicked from out the field to push the visitors 1-4 to 1-3 out in front. With the excellent Brian Murphy at full-back along with the alert Myles Kelly and Gary Loftus holding their own in the full-back-line, while Cathal Hallinan along with Joe Geraghty and Ruaidhri O’Connor were comfortable in the half back line, the boys in red started to control the game more. Further pressure saw Cillian O’Connor point his third free and he managed to flick over a long. high ball from Alan Dillon over the ball to secure a 1-6 to 1-3 lead at the interval.
The second half became an even more tense affair as the both teams tried to cancel each other out. However the score of the match saw Alan Dillon kick a point from way out on the right side near the sideline at least 40 yards out early in the second half. In fact the North Mayo side did register a number of wides during this period. Unfortunately the 2014 County Champions were given a sucker punch when the impressive Ruaidhri O’Connor got shown the red card not long after getting a yellow card for a previous incident which did seem harsh. This incident certainly spurred Knockmore on as they kicked over the rapid points to suddenly reduce the Abbeysiders lead to the minimum with time running out. Cool heads were required and it took the experience of full-forward Cillian O’Connor to win a deserved free which he coolly pointed from 30 yards . The recently crowned Michael Walsh Senior League winners kept plugging away and the deservedly scored the games next score but it proved to be the last point of the game as Ballintubber bravely held out. Others to impress included the powerful Danny Geraghty in midfield along with Jason Gibbons who also had his moments while Cillian O’Connor was the games top scorer with key plays from Alan Dillon and Padraig O’Connor at various stages
Ballintubber team that lined out : Brendan Walsh, Myles Kelly, Brian Murphy, Gary Loftus, Joe Geraghty, Cathal Hallinan, Ruaidhri O’Connor (0-1), Danny Geraghty, Jason Gibbons, Damien Coleman, Alan Dillon (Capt) (0-1), Damien McGing (0-1), Padraig O’Connor (1-0), Cillian O’Connor (0-5, 4f), Ray Geraghty. Subs used - Eoghan Vahey for Ray Geraghty, David McHale for Padraig O’Connor, Michael Hoban for Damien Coleman.
Michael Walsh Senior League Quarter-Final Sunday March 20th
Knockmore 2-16 0-9 Ballintubber
Our Senior teams interest in the Michael Walsh Senior League ended in sunny Knockmore on Sunday when a strong second half performance saw the hosts run out comfortable winners. The 2014 champions had matched the North Mayo side in the opening half as the lead changed hands numerous times before the half ended at 0-8 apiece. Full-forward Ray Geraghty was on form for the Abbeysiders as he landed five of the scores while 2 further points came from Bryan Walsh with centre-half-forward Eoghan Vahey also among the scorers. Unfortunately the boys in red never really got going in the second half as the hosts bagged an early goal and finished out comprehensive winners although the scoreline may be a bit flattering. It also should be noted that Ballintubber were without a host of players and will hope to have many back for their opening Senior League game against Knockmore incidentally at the same venue. Best for the 'tubber included Brendan Walsh in goal, Brian Murphy, Myles Kelly and Joe Geraghty in defence while Danny Geraghty in midfield along with his brother Ray at full-forward as well as Eoghan Vahey and Bryan Walsh who also caught the eye. Substitute Dave Clarke did offer something extra towards the end after being introduced. An interesting observation of the Knockmore 'keeper where star forward Aidan Kilcoyne comfortably manned the position.
Ballintubber team that lined out - Brendan Walsh, Sean Staunton, Brian Murphy, Kevin Shannon, Myles Kelly, Gary Loftus, Joe Geraghty. David McHale, Danny Geraghty, Declan Larkin, Eoghan Vahey (0-1), Darren Flannery, Aaron Lally, Ray Geraghty (0-6, 4f), Bryan Walsh (0-2). Subs used - Alan Larkin for Aaron Lally, Dave Clarke for Gary Loftus, Oran Scully for Darren Flannery, Michael Conway and Liam Feeney also used .
Under 14s win County Final
Our under 14 squad had a fantastic and well deserved victory in Championship 'C' final played in McHale Park on Thursday 18th. Naomh Padraig ( an amalgamation of Kilala, Lacken, Kilfian and Balycastle) provided the opposition. The final score was Ballintubber 7-10 to Naomh Padraig 3-14. Well done to the management team of MJ Ruddy, Declan Joyce, Frank Walsh, Kevin Shannon and Damien Flately and the panel Diarmuid Heneghan, Ciaran Heneghan, Magnus Malone (capt), Sean McEvilly, James King, Josh Mahon, Darragh Joyce, Caobhlin Flately, Cillian Joyce, Stephen Burke, Bobby Reilly, Colm Larkin, Matthew Coyne, Robbie Finnerty, Damien Jennengs, Luke Biggins, James Lally, Noah Corbett, Sean Duffy, Nathan Gibbons, Jack Clarke, Dean O'Malley.