Ballinacurra V Lisgoold 2004
Seamus O Flynn Cup 5th September 2004 Hurling Final
2004 East Cork County Qualifiers Against Lisgoold
BALLINACURRA 2-09 Vs LISGOOLD 0-12
Trevor Richards Steven Kirrane Ger Healy Thomas O’Meara Vincent O’Sullivan Mossie Stack
Killian Harty Daniel Twomey
Tony Connolly Brian Sigerson Dave Barry
Kieran O’Callaghan Colin Richards Damien Daly
Tommy O’Leary Arthur Murphy Ian Cahill Richie Keohane James O’Callaghan
Alan McCarthy Eric Harty Lar Hayes Packie O’Sullivan Dillin Roche
It was a game where victory could have gone either way, but a late burst by Ballinacurra that produced three unanswered points in a seven minute spell proved crucial in the final of the East Cork County Junior ‘B’ qualifier at Shanagarry Last Sunday (5th September). Three points behind with thirteen minutes remaining, Ballinacurra looked destined for a disappointing defeat, but Ballinacurra dug deep into their reserve of self belief and determination and somehow conjured up a very significant victory. In fact Ballinacurra were under server pressure for long periods as Lisgoold came at them in waves, but once Kieran O’Callaghan forced the sliothar over the line with ten minutes to go, Ballinacurra produced a purple patch which yielded all the important winning scores.
Ballinacurra got off to a flying start when Man Of The Match Tony Connolly, fired over an early free after Kieran O’Callaghan was fouled. Lisgoold had a chance at the other end, but after an attack broke down, Dave Barry latched on the ball around midfield and rifled over the second point for Ballinacurra Lisgoold were soon out of their blocks when Tom Gentleman tapped over a free and when the same player added another, it was all to play for with the sides deadlocked. For a while Lisgoold had the greater share of possession due to the dominant play of Noel Connery, Ger O’Connell, Brian Clifford and Charlie Smart. However they were rocked to their boots when Ballinacurra broke downfield for Colin Richards to beat Ciaran Cronin from the edge of the square for an opportunist goal.
The goal opened up a 1-02 to 0-03 lead although Lisgoold controlled matters again, and Ballinacurra failed to register for the remainder of the first half despite hard work put in by Trevor Richards, Mossie Stack, Thomas O’Meara, Brian Sigerson, Tony Connolly and Killian Harty. Soon Lisgoold restored parity and swept downfield for three excellent points by Seamus McSweeney, Noel Connery and Charlie Smart to level the match at 1-02 to -0-05. In the 21st minute, Ballinacurra were lucky when goalie Mark O’Sullivan came off his line to beat McSweeney to a fifty-fifty ball. They continued to dominate and two pointed frees by Tom Gentleman eased Lisgoold into a 0-07 to 1-02 lead at the interval.
Ballinacurra’s shots were wayward before the break and three consecutive wides didn’t help there cause. The most striking aspect of the second half was the resolute defending at both ends. Ballinacurra soon found themselves three points down when Tom Gentleman pointed a free, and then were lucky when Mark O’Sullivan made good save from James Hurley, followed by a sideline cut by Brian Clifford. Ballinacurra Forwards impressed in the second half with Tony Connolly on the forty pointing two points one from a free and a second from play to reduce the margin to 0-08 to 1-04 by the 38th minute. The game was now fraught with excitement as Stevie Kirrane, Vincent O’Sullivan, Tom O’Meara, Mossie Stack, Ger Healy, Brian Sigerson, Tony Connolly and Killian Harty were prominent for Ballinacurra.
At the beginning of the last quarter, Lisgoold looked like pulling away when points by Noel Connery and Tom Gentleman eased Lisgoold into a 0-10 to 1-04 lead. This was quickly increased to a four point margin after Charlie Smart set up Michael Cronin for a good score. In between Ballinacurra had a couple of chances and Ciaran Cronin did well to save from Daniel Twomey. Yet, Lisgoold could only add one more point as Ballinacurra finished the stronger side, reflected by Kieran O’Callaghan’s 48th minute goal after the goalie had saved from Daniel Twomey. Ballinacurra then went in front with a long range Killian Harty point, and Ballinacurra finished in a blaze of glory with a further minors by Brian Sigerson (two) and Tony Connolly.
In retrospect, you would have fancied Lisgoold for long periods, but obviously Ballinacurra had other ideas and it was a delighted Stevie Kirrane who received the Seamus O’Flynn trophy from the Divisional Board Chairman Ger Lane.