ACHL Division 1
Dunloy 3-23 Ballycastle 2-16
With the league title already residing in Fr Healy Park, Dunloy out-scored visitors Ballycastle in a high scoring encounter at Pearse Park on Sunday.
With their county players back on board the Cuchullian’s had too much fire power in the end for a Ballycastle team who produced some excellent spells of hurling themselves with both sides probably using this game as preparation for the forthcoming championship.
Eoin O’Neill was in great form for the home side and netted within 10 seconds to give his side a lead they would not lose over the hour.
Points from O’Neill and Ryan McGarry for Dunloy in response to similar scores from Seamus and Neal McAuley for Ballycastle kept the score board ticking before O’Neill got in for his second goal with 7 minutes on the clock.
It was the Cuchullian’s who continued to call the shots as Chrissie McMahon, Keelan Molloy 0-2 and Phelim Duffin with a massive point from inside his own half moved the home side 2-4 to 0-3 ahead after 13 minutes, the Ballycastle point coming from Neal McAuley.
Dunloy continued to press forward with points from Keelan Molloy and Kevin McKeague before the visitors replied through Aaron Mooney and James McLister with Coby Cunning and Ciaran Butler exchanging further minors.
The ‘Castle’ were battling hard and were rewarded for their efforts when Neal McAuley finished a well worked attack with a goal in the 20th minute and the same player added a pointed free and another from play by the 25th minute.
It was the Pearse Park side who finished the half on the front foot however as Keelan Molloy, Nigel Elliott, Coby Cunning and Molloy again add unanswered points to leave the home side 2-12 to 1-8 ahead at the break.
Dunloy started the second half as they had the first with Coby Cunning firing home their third goal in the opening minute and Keelan Molloy, Cunning and Seann Elliott added points in quick succession.
Lorcan Donnelly replied with a goal for Ballycastle in the 4th minute and followed with a point to raise the visitor’s hopes but three on the bounce from Deaglan Smyth, Seann Elliott and Keelan Molloy moved the championship holders 12 ahead by the 13th minute.
It was as good as over at this stage but to their credit Ballycastle never gave up and out-scored the home side 6 to 2 in the final quarter with Seamus McAuley leading the way.
McAuley added 0-3 to his side’s total with Ciaran Butler 0-2 and Conor Boyd on target for the visitors while Chrissie McMahon replied for a Dunloy side who could just be running into form with the championship looming on the horizon.
Dunloy: 1 Ryan Elliott, 2 Phelim Duffin, 3 Conor McKinley, 4 Conor Kinsela, 5 Eamon Smyth, 6 Kevin Molloy, 7 Ryan McGarry, 8 Ciaran Elliott, 9 Eoin McFerran, 10 Keelan Molloy, 11 Gabriel McTaggart, 12 Nigel Elliott, 13 Eoin O’Neill, 14 Conal Cunning, 15 Chris McMahon, 16 Eoghan Richmond, 17 Seaan Elliott, 18 Ronan Molloy, 20 Deaglan Smyth
Ballycastle: 1 Ryan McGarry, 2 Oisin McAuley, 3 Conal Colgan, 4 Reuben McClean, 5 James McLister, 6 Conor Boyd, 7 Eoin McAlonan, 8 Ronan McCarry, 9 Rian McCook, 10 Seamus McAuley, 11 Ciaran Butler, 12 Neal McAuley, 13, Lorcan Donnelly, 14 Cathal Connor, 15 Aaron Mooney.
Referee: Eamonn Hassan