Ballycastle stay tops after away win over Tir na nOg

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ACHL Div2

Tír na nÓg  1.15 (18)

Ballycastle 1.24 (27)

Ballycastle remain top of Division 2 after a convincing win away to Tír na nÓg,  All the damage was done in the opening half when the visitors were in irresistible form scoring 1-16 with the Whitehill side on managing a paltry 0-2 during this period

The Whitehill men came to life after the break, scoring 1-13 and holding the visitors to 0-8 but by this stage all the damage had been done and Ballycastle remain on course for a quick return to division 1 following last season’s relegation from the top grade.

With a gale force wind blowing  in favour of the visitors they took full advantage. After only two minutes they lead 1-1 to no score with a point coming from Ciaran Butler and a goal through Ciaran Clarke. They added another 5 points to their lead through Tiarnan Butler, Ciaran Butler (2), Ciaran Clarke and Kevin Barry McShane before Ciaran Logan got the home-sides first point after fielding a side line by Kevin Kerr.

Conor Boyd impressed at mid field and struck three points in the first half while sending numerous balls into the inside forwards. Ballycastle continued to dominate as the Tír na nÓg men tried their best to defend against them and the stiff breeze. Ciaran Butler added another two points to his tally and caught poc out after poc out. McShane, Tiernan Butler and Clarke spilt the posts to leave the score 1-15 to 0.1 after 27minutes. As half time approached Ciaran Logan got his second point for the home-side and Ciaran Butler got his sixth leaving the black and amber men 17 points ahead at half time. The first half was dictated by wing forwards McShane and Butler, McAuley anchored a strong half back line while the full back line weren’t tested until the beginning of the second half.

Tír na nÓg added some strength to the team at half time with the introduction of Ryan O’Neill and Ciaran McKeown which seemed to make a difference as they hit the first two points of the second half through Kevin McCann and Ciaran Logan, two men who really came into it in the second half. Rudi Graham pulled off a point blank save from Butler but the visitors got the rub of the green when it fell back to KB McShane who pointed. Sean Duffin relied with the game’s next point before Brendan Kerr played a ball to Kevin McCann who laid it back to Logan for his fourth point of the game.

McShane and Ryan O’Neill traded points and Kevin McCann got his second. Ballycastle responded with points through Tiernan Butler and Diarmuid McShane who got his first. McCann who was on a roll got the next two points before substitute Ciaran McKeown added another after a pass from Caoimhin Duffin to leave the score 1.21 to 0.11 after 47 minutes. Diarmuid McShane stepped up again before on fire Kevin McCann found the back of the net and a small bit of hope for the blues.

Full forward Kevin Sheerin then added a point from play on 51 minutes as the Whitehill side enjoyed their best period of the game before substitute Eamon Elliott was fouled and Ciaran Clarke hit the ball over the black spot, their only score from a placed ball. Diarmuid McShane got Ballycastle’s last score of the game and Kevin Sheerin tagged on three frees before Eamon Hasson blew for full time.

A comfortable win for Ballycastle however it was a game that was dictated by the wind and resulted in a game of two halves. Ballycastle capitalised on the wind and opened a big lead that was enough to see them home despite some great movement and scores from Tír na nÓg in the second half. The Hurling now takes a break until the 23rd May and gives way for the opening of the football leagues on Wednesday night. Tír na nÓg travel to Woodlands to take on Davitt’s in the ACFL Division 2 and Ballycastle host St. Agnes’ in the ACFL Division 3.

 

Tír na nÓg:

  1. R. Graham 2. R. O’Neill 3. D. Martin 4. B. Kerr 5. K. Kerr 6. C. Duffin 7. T. Martin 8. E. Martin 9. C. Fitzgerald 10. S. Duffin 11. P. Sheerin 12. C. Logan 13. D. Mallon 14. K. Sheerin 15. K. McCann 17. C. McKeown 18. S. Carey 19. E. Heffron 20. R. O’Neill 21. M. Higgins 22. D. Fegan

 

Subs used: M. Higgins for R. O’Neill (26mins), R. O’Neill for K. Kerr, Ciaran McKeown for D. Mallon (ht), D. Fegan for P. Sheerin (56mins)

 

Scorers: K. McCann (1.4), C. Logan (0.4), K. Sheerin (0.4- 3 frees), S. Duffin (0.1), R. O’Neill (0.1), C. McKeown (0.1)

 

Ballycastle

  1. R. McGarry 2. J. McLister 3. M. Donnelly 4. O. McAuley 5. S. McCarry 6. N. McAuley 7. J. McShane 8. R. McCarry 9. C. Boyd 10. KB McShane 11. C. Clarke 12. C. Butler 13. C. Connor 14. T. Butler 15. D. McShane 16. B. Connor 17. B. McQuillan 18. O. Kearney 19. C. Brown 20. S. Staunton 21. C. Donnelly 22. A. Lofthouse 23. E. Elliott 24. C. Laverty 25. S. McCleane

 

Subs used: O. Kearney, E. Elliott for T. Butler, S. McCleane for C. Connor

 

Scorers: C. Butler (0.6), C. Clarke (1.3- 1 free) C. Boyd (0.4), KB McShane (0.4), D. McShane (0.4)T. Butler (0.3)

Referee: Eamon Hasson

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