Home Sport GAA Ballyroan-Abbey end 47 year Minor football famine in style

Ballyroan-Abbey end 47 year Minor football famine in style

Ballyroan-Abbey team MFC final replay

Ballyroan-Abbey 2-15 Portarlington 0-8
Midlands Park Hotel MFC Final Replay

Ballyroan-Abbey’s wait for a first minor football title since 1971 is over after they defeated a 13-man Portarlington side in O’Moore Park this afternoon.

Portarlington had Sean Michael Corcoran and PJ Ward dismissed in the second half but in truth the game was well over at that stage.

A fantastic first half for Ballyroan-Abbey did the trick this time and unlike in last week’s draw, they didn’t allow Portarlington to recover and won by 13 points in the end.

Ballyroan-Abbey made a great start to this one and pinned Portarlington in right from the off – they kicked the first four points of the game with Brian Whelan landing a brace as Enda McWey and Ciaran Byrne landed another.

Portarlington finally got up the field and had a goal chance through Darragh Galvin but that was blocked by Eoghan Dunne and they had to settle for a point from Sean Michael Corcoran point.

That seemed to settle Portarlington with Corcoran and Ciaran Ward adding further points to cut the gap to two at the midpoint of the half.

However, that was Portarlington’s final score of the half as Ballyroan-Abbey added 2-5 in the time that remained.

The first goal arrived after 21 minutes when Brian Whelan’s shot came down off the crossbar and fell to Dylan Cuddy. He had three attempts at it but eventually he forced the ball beyond a combination of keeper Rhys Donagher and full back Jack O’Neill.

And the same player had the ball in the net again just before half time after some great play from Ciaran Byrne and Davin McEvoy found him unmarked at the back post – that left it 2-10 to 0-3 at the break.

If Portarlington were to have any chance of another dramatic fightback, they needed to start well and a they got the first three scores via Sean Michael Corcoran, PJ Ward and Ciaran Ward.

Ballyroan-Abbey were shaking a small bit and failed to score for the third quarter of the game but points from Ciaran Byrne and Brian Whelan settled them.

And then Portarlington were reduced to 14 men after 47 minutes when Sean Michael Corcoran was shown a straight red card by referee Brendan Hickey following an incident involving Cathal Doyle.

Aaron Coss and Ciaran Ward cut the gap back to 10 as we entered the final ten minutes but Ballyroan-Abbey were never in danger.

Portarlington would finish this game with 13 men too as PJ Ward was shown a black card, and then a red, having been issued with a yellow card in the first half.

Whelan and Byrne kicked the closing scores as Ballyroan-Abbey claimed glory.


SCORERS – Ballyroan-Abbey: Dylan Cuddy 2-2, Brian Whelan 0-6 (two frees), Ciaran Byrne 0-5, Enda McWey 0-1. Portarlington: Sean Michael Corcoran 0-3 (one free), Ciaran Ward 0-3 (two frees), PJ Ward 0-1, Aaron Coss 0-1

PORTARLINGTON: Rhys Donagher; Conor McCarthy, Jack O’Neill, Ryan Clancy; Rioghan Murphy, Mikey Bennett, Cathal Bennett; Sean Michael Corcoran, Patrick Sobczak; Aaron Coss, PJ Ward, Ceilum Coughlan Maher; Ciaran Ward, Darragh Galvin, Adam Lambkin. Subs: Darragh Slevin for Lambkin (ht), Dylan Murphy for Sobczak (40m), James Haberlin for Maher (55m)

BALLYROAN-ABBEY: Patrick Mulligan; Eamonn Fitzpatrick, Fionnan Mahony, Eoghan Dunne; Danny Brennan, Adam Dunne, Eoin Egan; James McWey, Cathal Doyle; Shaun Fitzpatrick, Dylan Cuddy, Enda McWey; Davin McEvoy, Brian Whelan, Ciaran Byrne. Subs: Lawson Obular for Cuddy (50m), Conaire Gee for S Fitzpatrick (56m), Robert Wall for E Fitzpatrick (58m), Odhran Delaney for McEvoy (60m)

Referee: Brendan Hickey (Graiguecullen)

SEE ALSO – Dad of ill Laois girl who featured on ‘The Town’ series to appear on Winning Streak

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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.