Balt­in­glass see off Eire Og in lack­lus­tre af­fair

Wicklow People (West Edition) - - SPORT - LIAM O’LOUGH­LIN at Aughrim


WITH noth­ing at stake here other than de­cid­ing who would play ei­ther Kil­te­gan or Hollywood in their rel­e­ga­tion games next day out, this Se­nior foot­ball en­counter played at Aughrim on Sun­day last never rose to any level of in­ten­sity.

Early pres­sure from Balt­in­glass led to two pointed frees from Johnny Keogh in the open­ing few min­utes.

The Slaneyside­rs were play­ing into the town end and had the ad­van­tage of a breeze as well. Éire Óg were slow off the mark and it took five min­utes for their open­ing point to come from a Dar­ren Hay­den free.

Balt­in­glass half-back Tom Burke struck a huge blow in the eighth minute when he car­ried the ball straight through the heart of the Eire Og de­fence with a pacey solo run and was up ended just as he pulled the trig­ger inside the large penalty area.

The other wing half-back, Stephen Heaslip, dis­patched the kick to leave the Slaneyside­rs ahead 1-2 to 0-1 at this stage.

They con­tin­ued to pres­surise the Grey­stones de­fence us­ing Peader Burke at full-for­ward as a tar­get man. Burke was fouled a num­ber of times and was also lay­ing off ball to hun­gry for­wards. Johnny Keogh pointed a free and Kevin Murphy, Adam McHugh and John Mc­Grath added points over the next ten min­utes.

Mc­Grath’s score was a beauty off the out­side of his right foot. Éire Óg were be­gin­ning to get for­ward more at this stage through the com­bined ef­forts of Fin­tan O’Shea, An­thony Byrne, Dar­ren Hay­den, James Cran­ley and Daniel Keane.

How­ever, their inside pen­e­tra­tion was lim­ited and in­vari­ably the Balt­in­glass de­fence were break­ing up their at­tacks and counter at­tack­ing at pace. Dan Keane got Éire Óg’s sec­ond point af­ter 18 min­utes, but Johnny Keogh pointed a free and Adam McHugh fisted over a point to leave Balt­in­glass lead­ing by 1-8 to 0-2 with 20 min­utes gone.

Dar­ren Hay­den pointed another free as Éire Óg put on more sus­tained pres­sure. Dan Kelly came back with a Balt­in­glass free sec­ond off his left. James Cran­ley and Gavin O’Shea shot two quick Éire Óg points to bring their tally to 0-5 and a Dar­ren Hay­den free as the time added pe­riod ar­rived left the score line a lit­tle more man­age­able for the sec­ond half.

How­ever, Tom Burke knocked the stuff­ing out of their prospects when he buried the sec­ond goal for Balt­in­glass just on the call of half-time. Balt­in­glass led now by 2-9 to 0-6.

The sec­ond half was an even more lack­lus­tre af­fair when it quickly be­came ap­par­ent that Éire Óg were un­able to mount a come­back. Scores were scarce and slow to come as Balt­in­glass played a con­tain­ing game and did just enough to main­tain their com­fort­able lead and were pulling back play­ers when­ever dan­ger threat­ened.

They scored five points in this half with Johnny Keogh point­ing three frees and Adam McHugh and sub­sti­tute Chris Heaslip get­ting the other two scores.

Dar­ren Hay­den pro­vided the only re­sponse for the Grey­stones men, point­ing three frees, the last of which came just on the fi­nal whis­tle.

Un­usu­ally, Balt­in­glass goal­keeper Mark Jack­son had only one shot at goal and that came only two min­utes from full-time.

The out­come of the game means that Balt­in­glass will now play Hollywood while Éire Óg take on Kil­te­gan.

Scor­ers - Balt­in­glass: Johnny Keogh 0-7, Adam McHugh 0-3, Stephan Heaslip 1-0, Tom Burke 1-0, Kevin Murphy, John Mc­Grath, Dan Kelly and Chris Heaslip 0-1 each.

Éire Óg: Dar­ren Hay­den 0-6, Dan Keane, James Cran­ley and Gavin O’Shea 0-1 each.

BALT­IN­GLASS: Mark Jack­son; Paddy Kir­wan, Ian Sheerin, Billy Cullen; Stephan Heaslip, Pat Burke, Tom Burke; Kevin Murphy, Paddy Whe­lan; Cian Lee, Johnny Keogh, Daniel Kelly; Adam McHugh, Peader Burke, John Mc­Grath. Subs: Jor­dan Deans, John Mur­ray, Chris Heaslip, Dar­ragh Doyle, Sean O’Brien and Chris Grimes.

EIRE OG: Conor Browne; Liam Maguire, Daire Devine, Con­all Deeney; Dar­ragh Shiels, Michael Can­non, Fin­tan O’Shea, Matt Maguire, An­thony Byrne; James Cran­ley, Dar­ren Hay­den, Peter Keane; Daniel Keane, Craig Smullen, Gavin O’Shea. Subs: Sean Law­less, Do­minic O’Brien, Shaun Cran­ley, James Wood, Cian O’Fla­herty. REF­EREE: Ian Cul­bert (Rath­new)

Johnny Keogh of Balt­in­glass is chased by Con­all Deeney of Eire Og.

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