Monday 15 October 2018

Devlin seals title for Ballinderry

Ballinderry fought back strongly against Slaughtneil to pip them to the Derry title in a close and hard-fought encounter.

They came from three points down just before the break to narrow the gap to 0-6 to 0-5 at the short whistle and then took the lead for the first time seven minutes into the second half.

They were the better side for long periods but it wasn't until the dismissal of Slaughtneil cornerback Francis McEldowney in the last minute that they pulled away in what was a tight contest.

Paul Bradley opened the scoring from a free after two minutes, with Patsy Bradley fisting Slaughtneil's second point in the fifth minute.

James Conway hit Ballinderry's first score two minutes later but Paul Bradley added a second free to make it 0-3 to 0-1 after 12 minutes.

By the 20th minute Raymond Wilkinson and James Bateson had levelled the scores but Paul Bradley and Jim Kelly pointed frees to open up a three point lead.

In the closing minutes of the half Kevin 'Moss' McGuckin and Conleith Gilligan from a free cut the lead to 0-6 to 0-5.

Ballinderry continued where they left off, Gilligan equalising from a free and then Colin Devlin putting the Shamrocks in front from another placed ball.

However, Paul Bradley and then Kelly kept Slaughtneil on level terms.

In the 47th minute, wing-back Michael Bell scored a tremendous point to put Ballinderry back in front, and a 60th-minute Devlin free sealed their 10th senior title.

SCORERS -- Ballinderry: C Devlin (2f), C Gilligan (2f) 0-2 each, R Wilkinson, J Bateson, M Harney, J Conway, K McGuckin, M Bell 0-1 each. Slaughtneil: Paul Bradley 0-5 (0-4f), J Kelly (2f) 0-2, Patsy Bradley 0-1.

Ballinderry -- M Conlan; D Bell, N McCusker, K McGuckin; M Bell, C Nevin, M McIver; J Conway, E Muldoon; K M McGuckin, D Conway, M Harney; J Bateson, C Gilligan, R Wilkinson. Subs: C Devlin for K M McGuckin, B McGuckin for Bateson, D Bateson for Bell.

Slaughtneil -- A McMullan; J McMullan, M Kelly, Francis McEldowney; P Kelly, B McGuigan, C Cassidy; Patsy Bradley, S Kelly; C McKaigue, Fergal McEldowney, N Convery; J Kelly, E McKaigue, Paul Bradley. Subs: C McKenna for Convery, M McEldowney for McMullan.

Ref -- Barry Toland (Banagher).

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