Ballinlough moved into pole position in Division 6 of the B-League with a facile home win over Nobber on Wednesday evening.
Ballinlough followed-up a good win over St. Colmcilles in the A-league the previous evening with an important win over Nobber in the last round of the B-League competition, the win all but guarantees Raymond Lydon’s side a place in the final.
‘The Reds’ have used this year’s B-League and Junior D Championship to give younger players an opportunity to establish themselves in adult football and it was U-21 players such as; Shane Smith, Mark Mc Cullen, Patrick Briody, Kevin Mallen and Niall Farrelly who caught the eye in a solid team display.
Smith was typically assertive in defence while Mc Cullen dominated at midfield; Briody pulled the strings at centre half forward and created many openings for Mallen (0-5) and Farrelly (1-3) who were the main scoring threats. Their performances made it a comfortable evening for Ballinlough; James O’ Higgins, Conor Briody and Brian Smith were other scoring contributors as they led; 2-11 to 1-3, at half time. The Nobber goal was a great individual effort from lively half-forward Thomas Halpin in the 17th minute.
Nobber were more competitive during the second-half and Barry Entee’s goal was just reward for his efforts at midfield but with Ballinlough captain; Michael Mc Grane and defensive colleague Joe Farrelly putting in solid displays a comeback was never a possibility. Substitute Daniel Mc Cartan and Paddy Briody hit second-half goals for Ballinlough as they cantered to a comfortable victory.
Ballinlough: M. Brady, S. Smith, D. Muldoon, J. Farrelly, Jonathon O’ Reilly, Junior O’ Reilly (0-1), M. Mc Grane, M. Mc Cullen (0-1), S. Fagan, C. Briody (0-2), P. Briody (1-1), B. Smith (0-1), J. O’ Higgins (1-1), K. Mallen (0-5), N. Farrelly (1-3, 2f). Subs: D. Mc Cartan (1-1) for Jonathon O’ Reilly and J. Baugh for O’ Higgins.