Home Sport GAA Walsh returns as Ballylinan put Kilcruise to the sword

Walsh returns as Ballylinan put Kilcruise to the sword

Ballylinan's Gary Walsh has suffered a cruciate knee injury and will miss tonight's game against Portarlington
Ballylinan's Gary Walsh

Ballylinan 0-16 Arles-Kilcruise 0-9

ACFL Division 1B

Gary Walsh returned from injury to kick nine points as Ballylinan got the better of Arles-Kilcruise in Division 1B this afternoon.

His return will come as a welcome boost to Laois manager Peter Creedon as the classy forward only returned to full training on Friday night.

Another of Creedon’s county men, Ross Munnelly, also showed well and finished the game with six points to his name.

Ballylinan were playing with the aid of a stiff breeze in the first half and they used it well to race into a nine point lead.

Gary Walsh, Ciarán Farrell and Cathail Dunne were all on target while the best Kilcruise could manage in that period was a Chris Conway free which was disallowed after referee Clifford Ward adjudged that he had taken it from the wrong place.

The home side only managed one point in the first half and it came from Brendan Conway after some good work from Ross and Colm Munnelly.

But Ballylinan didn’t let up and they kicked two more points before the break via Kenna and Cathail Dunne to lead by 0-11 to 0-1 at half time.

Kilcruise needed to begin the second half well in order to mount a comeback but Ballylinan increased their lead to 12 points thanks to another Gary Walsh brace.

Kilcruise did eventually find their range as Ross Munnelly slotted the next four points of the game to bring the deficit back to eight.

However, Ballylinan kept their side of the scoreboard ticking as the excellent Gary Walsh added another two points.

Kilcruise needed goals to get them back in the game but the closest they came was when Alan McLaughlin found Ross Munnelly on the 14 metre line but his effort hit the crossbar and went over.

The men in maroon kept plugging away though with late points from Colm Munnelly, Ross Munnelly and Chris Conway but it wasn’t enough as Ballylinan prevailed by seven points.

ARLES-KILCRUISE: Jimmy McDonald; Mikey Wall, Ciarán Lawlor, Caolan Mulhall; Mark Wall, James Moore, Jason McLaughlin; Alan McLaughlin, Colm Munnelly (0-1); David Lawlor, Brendan Conway (0-1), Liam Whelan; Ross Munnelly (0-6, 3f), Fran Egan, Chris Conway (0-1). Subs: Daniel Jordan for C. Conway (28mins), Anthony McElroy for C. Lawlor (ht), Chris Conway for Jordan (40mins)

BALLYLINAN: Aidan Walsh; Oisin Bennett, Cathal Leonard, Kevin Byrne; Conor Behan, Richie Ryan, Robbie Donoher; John Kealy, Jamie Farrell; Larry Kealy, Ciarán Farrell (0-2, 1f), Podge Walsh (0-1); Brian Kenna (0-1), Gary Walsh (0-9, 5f), Cathail Dunne (0-3). Subs: Andy McEvoy for J. Farrell (40mins, inj), James Redmond for Kenna (52mins)

Killeshin 0-18 Annanough 1-10

Killeshin made a winning start to Division 1B whilst inflicting a second straight defeat upon Annanough at home this afternoon.

Killeshin’s first round clash with Portlaoise was postponed two weeks’ ago so this was their first competitive game of the season – and they will be happy as they ran out four point winners.

Annanough played with the breeze in the first half but they went in behind at the break. Donal Miller was on target for the away side but Evan Lowry and Cathal Brennan registered for Killeshin as they took a 0-5 to 0-4 lead into the interval.

Annanough stunned the hosts on the resumption of play when Rory Stapleton popped up to score the only goal of the game and give the visitors hope of emerging with victory.

But Killeshin steadied themselves down and points from Fionn Maher, Pat Maher, Cathal Brennan, Luke Attride, David Aston, Adam Deering and David Mahon saw them to a five point win.

Emo 3-7 Portarlington 1-11

Emo got the better of neighbours Portarlington in the other Division 1B match played this afternoon to preserve their unbeaten record under new manager Paul Lawlor.

Goals from player manager Paul Lawlor and veteran Mick Lawlor gave Emo a great start while Shane Murphy and Evan Costello also chipped in with points.

Portarlington did manage a goal from Colm Murphy in the opening period – as well as points from Jason Ward and Jake Foster – but it was Emo who took a 2-4 to 1-6 advantage into the interval.

The game swung one way and then the other in the second half but the crucial score came Emo’s way when wing forward Chris Gleeson found the net to seal a two point win. Ward, Murphy, Robbie Piggott and Sean Byrne all pointed for Port in the second half.

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Stradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016.