Ballyfin 3-13 Barrowhouse 0-6
ACFL Division 3A Semi Final
Ballyfin’s athleticism and poise proved too much for Barrowhouse in warm conditions in Ballyfin this evening as they marched into the Division 3A final.
A meeting between a senior and junior team looked a mismatch on paper and that is how it proved as Ballyfin won by 16 point advance to face Killeshin’s second string in the decider.
Barrowhouse actually started the better as, in the second minute, Lee Day opened the scoring from a free which they generated from a hard counter attack through Fergal Murphy.
Ballyfin levelled things up through Séan Moore moments later and they had the lead after Moore pointed again, this time from a well won mark.
Ballyfin held possession for long periods and some hard running off the shoulder created a great chance for Allan Connolly.
He jinked past two men before hammering the ball into the net as Ballyfin took an early lead.
They kept the foot on the gas with two in a row from Séan Moore before Fergal Murphy stepped up with a well needed free for Barrowhouse.
Just before the water break Max Connolly unleashed an incredible outside of the foot pass into the square to Ricky Quinlan and Séan Moore pointed on the loop.
The pace of the game slowed in such hot conditions but a long bursting counter attack from Darragh Connolly created a goal chance. However Darragh Phelan pulled off a great point blank save from Connolly to keep seven between the sides.
Barrowhouse were dangerous on the counter which resulted in frees for Murphy. He slotted two in a row to leave the scores at 1-7 to 0-4 at half-time.
Ballyfin started the second half with more urgency as they pointed four inside the opening 10 minutes.
Barrowhouse had a threat on the break at all times but they struggled to maintain meaningful possession.
To make matters worse Ballyfin got their second goal from a penalty after 42 minutes.
A pinpoint looping ball over the defence from Allan Connolly set up Jack Priestley who was fouled.
Séan Moore slotted the penalty away to give the home side a comfortable lead.
Ballyfin pressed on and nearly created a goal at the back post for Séan Moore but Darragh Phelan pulled off another outstanding point blank save.
Éanna Lyons pointed soon after to keep the scoreboard ticking over as Ballyfin’s athleticism created chances with runs from deep.
Barrowhouse stayed fighting and they got their reward. Murphy pointed a well eared free and soon after James Baldwin somehow managed to point whilst almost falling over.
With full-time approaching the game was put to bed as Ballyfin got their third goal.
Ricky Quinlan set up Louis Duff who hand passed the ball across to Gene O’Connor and he fisted the ball home.
The game petered out towards the end but the full-time whistle saw Ballyfin emerge with the win.
SCORERS – Ballyfin: Séan Moore 1-7 (two frees, 1-0 pen, one mark), Allan Connolly and Gene O’Connor 1-0 each, Adam Connolly, Jack Priestly, Aidan Keenaghan, Louis Duff, James Moore and Éanna Lyons 0-1 each Barrowhouse: Fergal Murphy 0-4 (all frees), Lee Day 0-1 (one free), James Baldwin 0-1
BALLYFIN: Rob Foran; George Lanham, David Connolly, Ciarán Fennelly; Allan Connolly, Ciarán Fingleton, Darragh Connolly; Ricky Quinlan, Max Connolly; Nick Cosgrove, James Moore, Jack Priestly; Séan Moore, Aidan Keenaghan, Adam Connolly. Subs: Louis Duff for Adam Connolly (HT), Éanna Lyons for M Connolly (44), Gene O’Connor for S Moore (44), Liam Dunne for Keenaghan (50), Enda Griffin for Fennelly (54)
BARROWHOUSE: Darragh Phelan; Andrew Baldwin, Thomas Page, Denis Brophy; Padraig Whelan, Thomas McDonald, Alex Robinson; Martin Murphy, Lochlann Kelleher; Tj Burke, Fergal Murphy, Alex Kenny; Lee Day, Sean Langton, James Baldwin. Subs: Luke Malone for Burke (38), Mike Langton for S Langton (45), Jamie Burke for Phelan (50)
Referee: John Flynn (The Rock)