Tuesday 17 September 2019

Ballintubber get fright, but scores from O'Connors see them home

Ballintubber (Mayo) 0-6 Tourlestrane (Sligo) 0-5

Cillian O'Connor of Mayo. Photo by Diarmuid Greene/Sportsfile
Cillian O'Connor of Mayo. Photo by Diarmuid Greene/Sportsfile

Ballintubber did just enough against hard-working Tourlestrane in Quigabar to set up a semi-final date with Leitrim's Aughawillan.

Ballintubber's heroes from their Mayo county final success, Cillian and Diarmuid O'Connor, were to the fore again - Cillian landed five points from frees and Man of the Match Diarmuid notched a point.

The defensive toil of the Sligo champions curbed Ballintubber, who led by just two points at the interval, 0-3 to 0-1, as the Mayo side also hit five wides when backed by a firm breeze in the opening period.

The O'Connor brothers were responsible for Ballintubber's three first-half scores, with Tourlestrane's only white flag of the opening period coming from a Cathal Henry point.

Tourlestrane showed more attacking appetite in the second-half, but Ballintubber kept them at arm's length despite being marginally outscored after the break, 0-4 to 0-3.

The losers were hampered by an early injury for Gary Gaughan and Gary's brother, Sligo forward Liam, was deemed not fit enough to start.

A 46th-minute red card for Shane Dunne, who won his 10th county medal with the south Sligo club last month, made things even more difficult for the team jointly-managed by Eamonn O'Hara and Gerry McGowan.

Purists

Dunne, Oisín Kennedy and Cathal Henry, Tourlestrane's top scorer, scored impressively from play during the second-half, but Tourlestrane never managed to get level or go ahead.

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It wasn't a game for the purists, but Ballintubber boss Kevin Johnson, didn't mind.

"We came here to get over the line, Tourlestrane set up the way they set up," he said.

"Our lads are experienced, they know how to win games and I'm glad they came through the right side of it.

"The red card was a turning point - it allowed us to regroup and Michael Plunkett (Ballintubber's centre-back) ended up as the spare man," the Sligo native added.

Tourlestrane finished with 13 players due to the stoppage-time dismissal of Adrian McIntyre, who picked up a second booking.

SCORERS - Ballintubber: C O'Connor 0-5 (5f), D O'Connor 0-1. Tourlestrane: C Henry 0-3 (1f), S Dunne, O Kennedy 0-1 each

BALLINTUBBER - B Walsh; G Loftus, C Hallinan, B Murphy; D Coleman, M Plunkett, R O'Connor; J Gibbons, D O'Connor; C Gavin, A Dillon, A Plunkett; B Walsh, C O'Connor, S O'Malley. Subs: J Finnerty for O'Malley (51), P O'Connor for Gavin (58), M Kelly for Loftus (60)

TOURLESTRANE - A Broe; C Neary, B Walsh, B Kennedy; O Kennedy, A McIntyre, J Leonard; S Henry, P Harte; A Dunne, C Henry, S Dunne; G Gaughan, J Marren, J Kelly. Subs: John Quinn for Gaughan (8), C Surlis for Marren (45), L Gaughan for Quinn (54), C Marren for Henry (56)

Ref - Paddy Neilan (Roscommon).

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