It was another disappointing visit to Stamullen for Ballinlough on Sunday, as they suffered their second defeat to St. Pat’s in as many weeks.
St. Patricks: 2-09 Ballinlough: 1-02
Junior O'Reilly put in a solid performance for the Reds.
As with a fortnight ago, the visitors were missing a number of key personnel, but St. Pat’s ran out deserving winners, making better use of the strong breeze and holding a strong defensive structure throughout the contest.
Alan Vickers opened the scoring for the home side in the opening minutes with a fine point, before Daithi Whyte found the back of the net soon after with a low finish that left Keith McGuinness no chance.
Pat’s were playing with the aid of the strong wind in the opening period, and made it count. They had a further two points on the board through Vickers and Finian Everard, before Whyte picked up another goal in the twenty-third minute. This left his side ten points ahead, and ensured the ‘Lough had a mountain to climb to get back into the contest.
After a succession of misses, Ballinlough finally got their opening score in the twenty-fourth minute, when Peadar Byrne fired a blistering shot past Robert Cluskey in the Pat’s goal, after being played in by a good pass from Benji Smith.
The home side went into the break leading by a scoreline of 2-05 to 1-00.
Although the odds were stacked against them, Ballinlough came out fighting in the second period. Sean Geraghty fired over an excellent score from distance after impressive fielding by young midfielder Kevin Beirne.
The resulting kick-out was a poor one, and fell to lively young forward Jack Tunney, leaving him one on one with the keeper. His powerful shot was just inches too high, and grazed the cross bar as it went over for a point.
That proved to be Ballinlough’s last score of the afternoon, as St. Pat’s tagged on late scores through Whyte and Donal Landy, to run out comprehensive ten point winners.
The Reds will be hoping for an improved performance against Seneschalstown in the next round of the A-League in three weeks time.
Ballinlough: K. McGuinness, E. Smith, P. Muldoon, R. Farrell, J. Baugh, M. Geraghty, Johnny Reilly, L. Maguire, K. Beirne, P. Byrne (1-0), J. Tunney (0-1), S. Geraghty (0-1), Junior O’Reilly, M. McCullen, B. Smith. Subs: P. Monaghan for J. Baugh, J. O’Higgins for J. Tunney, J. O’Keefe for S. Geraghty.