IFC Preliminary Quarter Final Walterstown V Ballinabrackey
Clonard Saturday Sep 21 -2019
Score Walterstown 0 -10 Ballinabrackey 0-9
Walterstown travelled to Clonard for this Preliminary IFC quarter final on a very windy Saturday afternoon. Clonard GFC is to be complimented on their new facilities—the pitch was immaculate. Walterstown finished 3rd in their group even though they had won their last 4 matches and Ballinabrackey had also lost a couple of early season group matches but had finished strongly with 3 wins. Last year Walterstown had beaten the Bracks by a last-minute goal from Davy Donnellan in the 5th Rd of the IFC. Both teams knew they would need to play at their best to win last Saturday’s game.
In difficult windy conditions, Walterstown scored the first point with Barry o Connell on target after only 30 seconds. Ballinabrackey playing into the wind then scored 3 points before Barry o Connell scored a great point from way out the field. The Bracks then pointed from a 45 to go 4 points to 2 ahead. Then Walterstown ‘s Conor Farrelly took off on a surging run before passing to O Connell who added his 3rd point of the afternoon. A minute later O Connell scored another long-range point to leave the teams tied at 4 apiece after 19 minutes. Ballinabrackey hit Walterstown with attack after attack but the Blacks defence proved very resilient. Ballinabrackey scored 2 frees before half time to go in 6 points to 4 ahead, when Referee Colm McManus blew for the interval. Walterstown had fought very hard to hold Ballinabrackey to a 2-point lead but there was worry in their camp that they would now be playing into a strong wind, against a well organised Ballinabrackey defence.
One minute after the restart Walterstown’s experienced Alban Crosbie had the gap down to one after a nice left footed point from play. Ballinabrackey immediately replied with a point to put 2 between the sides again. Then Walterstown hearts sank at the sight of Barry O Connell coming off injured after only 5 minutes. Cormac Madden replaced him and played very well. They continued to battle hard against this strong Ballinabrackey side and indeed seemed to play better into the wind. Crosbie added a free to leave the Blacks trailing by just 1 after 10 minutes. The game now seemed to gain even more intensity and the last 20 minutes plus 6 minutes injury time, were played at fever pitch, as both sets of supporters cheered their teams on. John Geoghegan came on for Walterstown’s half forward Adam Treanor and scored a point to bring the teams level at 07-07 after 20 minutes. A few minutes later Crosbie added another point from a free to put them 1 ahead. Two minutes later Mark McCormack added a nice point from play after a well worked move. At full time the Ref signalled that there would be 6 minutes of injury time. Walterstown withstood Ballinabrackey’s attacks until 2 minutes into time added on. Then Ballinabrackey were awarded a 40m free which they converted. Then amazingly they added another point in the 33rd minute to level the scores again. However, even though most peoples’ nerves were frazzled by now, Walterstown somehow dug deep and found the reserves to launch another attack. With seconds remaining, after an intricate series of passes, Walterstown’s Full Back Cathal Hennelly, who was about 15 m out from goal, coolly fisted the ball over the bar from a tight angle. Unfazed Ballinabrackey with seconds remaining still launched another attack, which to the relief of Walterstown resulted in a wide. When the final whistle blew all were agreed that both teams had contributed to a very exciting, hard fought game of football.
Final Score Walterstown 0 -10 Ballinabrackey 0-9
Walterstown Manager Joe Treanor and Mentor Martin O Connell will have been very pleased with their players tenacity and work rate. Goalkeeper Ciaran Lydon found his men nearly always with his kickouts. The Walterstown backs Eoin O Mahony, Cathal Hennelly, Colm Reilly, Colin McGrane, Davy Reynolds and Aron McLoughlin all played excellently as a unit. Their Midfielders Alban Crosbie and Conor O Sullivan worked tirelessly. The forwards Mark McCormack, Paul Donnellan, Adam Treanor, Conor Farrelly, Ruairí O Dowd and Barry O Connell also gave their all. The subs Cormac Madden, John Geoghegan and Peter Reynolds also contributed greatly to the win. Sadly, though Walterstown’s talented forward Cormac Madden, who was only returned from injury suffered a broken collar bone in a collision in the second half. Now Walterstown now play Nobber next weekend in the IFC Quarter Final.
Walterstown: Ciaran Lydon, Eoin O Mahony, Cathal Hennelly (0-1), Colm Reilly, Colin McGrane, Davy Reynolds, Aron McLoughlin, Alban Crosbie (0-3, F2), Conor O Sullivan. Mark McCormack (0-1). Ruairi O Dowd, Adam Treanor, Conor Farrelly, Paul Donnellan, Barry O Connell (0-4)
Subs: Cormac Madden for Barry O Connell, Peter Reynolds for Adam Treanor, John Geoghegan (0-1) for Cormac Madden
Sunday 29th September IFC Quarter Final Nobber V Walterstown @ 3:45 in Trim
Friday 27th Junior C Championship Quarter Final Clan nNa Gael V Walterstown @ 8pm in Dunganny.