Ballyfin 1-14 Colt 2-14
Laois Shopping Centre Senior ‘A’ Hurling Championship Round 3
Colt finished with a flourish in Mountrath this afternoon to defeat Ballyfin and claim top spot in Group A.
The 2017 defeated finalists are now straight through to the semi finals after edging out both Mountrath and Ballyfin on scoring difference in Group A after all three sides finished level on four points at the top.
They trailed by four points at half time and the margin was still three as we entered the final quarter. However, Colt outscored Ballyfin by 1-5 to 0-2 in the time that remained and that would prove to be the difference in the end.
Ballyfin began the game with an Allan Connolly point but Colt hit back in style with a Chris Murray point and then a brilliant goal by Sean Callaghan.
Henry Keyes added another point but three Gareth Dunphy frees in a row for Ballyfin had the margin back to one as we approached the midpoint of the half.
Chris Murray and Enda Mulhall added two more points for Colt in the time that remained but it was Ballyfin who would finish the half far the stronger.
Gareth Dunphy, Eanna Lyons and Garry Hoffmeister all raised white flags while Richie Downey also struck for a great goal to leave Ballyfin 1-8 to 1-4 ahead at the break.
Henry Keyes, James Keyes and Chris Murray cut into the lead on the resumption of play but Ballyfin kept in front thanks to Gareth Dunphy and Richie Downey.
A quickfire Chris Murray double moved the gap to one but two more Gareth Dunphy frees left Ballyfin 1-12 to 1-9 ahead with 46 minutes on the clock.
But Murray then struck for a goal and that changed the whole complexion of the game.
He and James Keyes added point immediately after as Colt went into a lead that they would never relinquish.
Gareth Dunphy slotted two late frees for Ballyfin but it wasn’t enough as Chris Murray and Henry Keyes saw Colt hold on to win by three.
Colt, Ballyfin and Mountrath all finished level on four points but Colt have plus 9 points difference so they finish top.
Ballyfin and Mountrath both have plus 2 points difference but under Rule 6.21 (4Ciii), when teams finish level on points difference, the team with the highest total score For finishes ahead.
Ballyfin have 51 and Mountrath have 50 so that means that Ballyfin finish second and will play Shanahoe in the quarter finals while Mountrath are third and will face Rosenallis.
SCORERS – Ballyfin: Gareth Dunphy 0-10 (seven frees), Richie Downey 1-1, Allan Connolly, Garry Hoffmeister and Eanna Lyons 0-1 each Colt: Chris Murray 1-8 (three frees), Sean Callaghan 1-0, Henry Keyes 0-3 (one free), Enda Mulhall 0-1, James Keyes 0-2
BALLYFIN: Dermot McGill; Cillian Rowney, Max Connolly, Louis Duff; Adam Walsh, Allan Connolly, Sean O’Neill; Brendan O’Neill, David Connolly; Gary Hoffmeister, Darragh Connolly, James Finn; Gareth Dunphy, Eanna Lyons, Richie Downey. Subs: Eamonn Duff, Kevin O’Rourke
COLT: Michael Dooley; Michael Farrell, Ger Doolan, Eoghan Brennan; Aaron McGowan, Henry Keyes, Niall Brennan; Gearoid Parkinson, Chris Murray; Enda Mulhall, James Keyes, Cian Moffit; Sean Callaghan, Owen Joyce, Brian McDermott. Subs: Mark McDonald, Robbie Delaney
Referee: Mick Cleere (Rathdowney-Errill)