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Championship win over Clonmore

posted 17 Aug 2015, 12:16 by Ballyhegan Davitts

Friday 14th August 2015 

Junior Football Championship Round 2 

Ballyhegan v Clonmore 

Ballyhegan 3-08 v Clonmore 1-13 Junior Cship Rd 2


Ballyhegan travelled to Tullysaran on Friday past to take on neighbours Clonmore in the 2nd round of the Junior Championship hoping to progress on to the Quarter Final. A four point win over Clonmore in the league earlier in the season meant nothing to either side going into the game. 

Clonmore got off the mark and took an early two-point lead inside the opening two minutes with both points coming from free kicks. The Davitts replied through Thomas Reynolds who benefitted from good work by Daniel McKeever and Jack Rafferty. Clonmore added two further frees either side of corner forward Paddy Marley taking a heavy knock but getting up to convert the resulting free. Two further points, one from a free and their first from play saw Clonmore open up a four-point lead but in the 19th minute the was turned on its head by Paul Nixon who had moved into full forward. Finding himself through on goal from receiving Thomas Reynolds’ pass, Nixon found the net to reduce the gap to a single point. From the resulting kickout Ballyhegan won possession. The ball made its way to full back Mark McKeever who had ventured up the pitch and he picked out a fantastic pass into Nixon who found himself in on goal once again, this time expertly rounding the ‘keeper and finishing low into the net to put the Davitts two points up. Nixon was involved in the next move combining with Daniel McKeever and Jack Rafferty to provide Thomas Reynolds the opportunity for his second point of the day which he duly took. Substitute Conal McKeever, on at this stage for the injured Paddy Marley, kicked a free on 23 minutes to put Ballyhegan four to the good.  With 2 minutes of the half remaining Clonmore won a free which they converted. Not done there, they pressed on and forced a turnover in the heart of the Davitts defence which saw the find the net to draw level and there was enough injury time to see them add a further point from play and go into the interval with a one-point lead. 


Half time: Ballyhegan 2-04 Clonmore 1-08 


After regrouping at half time it was the Davitts who got off the mark first in the second half with Conal McKeever drawing the sides level from a free kick in the first minute of the half. Two further points from Clonmore saw them pull away once more but a 4-minute purple patch from Ballyhegan saw them turn the game around yet again. On 37 minutes Paul Nixon got his first point of the game followed 2 minutes later by Conal McKeever’s first from play, drawing the game level. A minute later Mark Hughes and Jack Rafferty combined to feed Nixon who again found the net completing his hat-trick of goals from close range. A three-point lead with 10 minutes to go would see Clonmore throw everything at Ballyhegan. A free kick and a point from play saw them reduce the gap to the minimum but again Paul Nixon was on hand to extend the Davitts’ lead to two points. Another free for Clonmore left a single point between the sides with 5 minutes to go. Ballyhegan defended superbly in this period, aided well by the experienced Joey Murphy and held on for the win and to progress to the Quarter Finals. 


Full time: Ballyhegan 3-08 Clonmore 1-13 


Ballyhegan will be pleased to have hung on in the end and progressed but won’t be entirely happy with the performance, particularly in the first half. That said, they played some great football at times and showed a great will to win especially in the second half. Paul Nixon’s impressive return of 3-02 from play (not the first time this year he has bagged a hat-trick) was another major highlight. Next up for Ballyhegan the promotion push continues with fellow promotion chasers Corrinshego visiting Ballyhegan Park this Sunday 23rd August. 


Ballyhegan team lined out as follows: 

J McKeever (c), R McCormick, M McKeever, J Murphy, T Keegan (S McKeever 45), A Morgan, C Loughran (R McKeever 38), M Hughes (M Courtney 44), J Guy (C Williamson 33), T Reynolds 0-02, P Nixon 3-02, J McKeever (S McKeever HT), D McKeever, J Rafferty, P Marley 1f (C McKeever 0-03 2f)