Connacht Post-Primary Schools Senior ‘A Football Championship
Summerhill College 1-12
Ballinrobe Community School 2-7
A GOAL just before half-time proved to be the turning point at the Connacht GAA COE in Bekan on Thursday night as Summerhill came from behind to secure a place in the Connacht Post-Primary Schools Senior ‘A FC final.
The Sligo students had been nine points adrift before Ronan Niland drilled the ball to the net in first-half injury-time and that gave the boys in blue the boost to drive on and win the game after the resumption.
Ballinrobe were outstanding at times in the opening half and fully deserved to be well clear as the interval approached, but Summerhill refused to bend the knee and roared back to win the game.
Goals from Tom Lydon and Eoghan O’Halloran had helped Ballinrobe to a 2-6 to 0-3 lead as Conor Jennings, Tiernan Egan, Oisin Joyce, Jack Keane, Sean Biggins and Diarmuid Duffy caught the eye.
In truth, Ballinrobe CS should have been further in front before Summerhill began their revival, but once the Sligo lads saw an opportunity they seized upon it.
In the second half Niland was excellent at centre-half forward for the chasers, Dillon Walsh and Paul O’Brien powerful at midfield, and James Donlon highly-impressive at centre-half back.
Damien Egan’s Ballinrobe CS team found it almost impossible to work the ball to their inside forwards and with a stream of frees being awarded against them they were reeled in by the rejuvenated Summerhill side.
A superb point from Eli Rooney levelled the game after 51 minutes as Ballinrobe found scoring an impossibility.
Walsh put them in front and Niland doubled the lead as time ticked away.
The South Mayo lads threw everything forward in an effort to save the day and a point from Oisin Joyce left one between them deep in injury-time, but Mark Breheny’s Summerhill outfit held on to seal a place in the final against Claregalway College.
D O’Brien; R O’Callaghan, E Keane, R O’Hehir; J Campbell, J Donlon, R O’Kelly Lynch; D Walsh (0-1), P O’Brien; M McDaniel, R Niland (1-5, 0-3f), M Carroll; S O’Neill, E Rooney (0-6, 2f), G Lynch
Subs used; J Walsh, C Flynn, P Kerins.
S O’Connor; C Geraghty, S Biggins, S Flannery; O Corcoran, C Jennings, J Marrey; O Joyce (0-1), T Egan (0-1); R Corcoran, J Keane (0-2), J Luskin; D Duffy, T Lydon (1-2), E O’Halloran (1-1)
Subs used; R Hughes, E Kinneavey, D Cameron.