Moorefield second string too hot to handle for Ballymore in Dowling Cup Final

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Moorefield second string too hot to handle for Ballymore in Dowling Cup Final
By Robert Cribbin 18:05 Saturday 9th of March 2019

Moorefield 2-15

Ballymore Eustace 0-11

Dowling Cup Final

Moorefield captured their first ever Dowling Cup with a comfortable victory over Ballymore Eustace.

Moorefield were in control for much of the game with first half goals from Evan Kavanagh and Evan O’Brien bookending the result.

Both O’Brien and Ciaran Kelly scored 1-11 between them in a fluent attacking display that proved too much for a wasteful Ballymore team.

Ballymore did get to within three points at one stage but a late flourish from Moorefield sealed the victory.

Moorefield could have had a goal within a minute of the start as Evan O’Brien got a ball inside but after taking on and beating a couple of defenders his left footed shot could only rebound off the post.

Ballymore themselves were pretty wasteful in the opening stages as they kicked three wides before opening their account with a Niall Murphy free.

Ciaran Kelly and Joe Broderick then exchanged points before Moorefield got the opening goal in the 8th minute when O’Brien got behind the Ballymore rearguard and he calmly slotted a shot to the net.

Ballymore replied with a nice score from Niall Murphy but it was only brief respite as the Moores soon had goal number two with Evan Kavanagh cracking a left footed shot home after receiving an inside pass from Robbie Higgins.

Ballymore in truth should have been much closer to the Newbridge side but they kicked a number of wides until they found something of a spurt between the 14th and 21st minutes with points from Murphy, Aaron Deegan, Caolan Halpin and Michael Stewart Byrne bringing the sides level.

Evan O’Brien was proving a real threat up front for Moorefield though and he put his side back in front with a lovely point off his right foot after Ciaran Kelly found him with a lovely pass.

Joe Broderick hit back for Ballymore with a point when a goal may have been on but an O’Brien free at the start of stoppage time gave Moorefield a one point lead at the break.

Moorefield maintained their lead in the second period with a brace of quickfire points from O’Brien and Robbie Higgins.

Niall Murphy converted his fourth point in response for Ballymore but it was mostly Moorefield in the third quarter and three points on the bounce from O’Brien, Ciaran Kelly and sub Sean McDonnell pushed the Newbridge side into a 2-8 to 0-9 lead.

Moorefield did suffer a blow in the 50th minute however as corner back David Loughman received a black card for a trip on a Ballymore player and the 2017 Junior Champions immediately took advantage with points from Murphy and Caolan Halpin.

That brought the deficit down to three but Moorefield found another gear in the last few minutes with points from Kelly, O’Brien, Aaron Mullins and David Brannigan pushing them well clear.

Niall Murphy hit the crossbar with a late free but the damage was well done at that stage as Moorefield claimed a ten point victory.

 Moorefield: Sean Higgins; Shane Newman, Tom Harrington, David Loughman, Calum Sourke, Ger Naughton, James Dowling, Lee Murphy, Evan Kavanagh 1-0, Gavin Naughton, Ciaran Kelly 0-6 (0-4fs), Robbie Higgins 0-1, Aaron Mullins 0-1, Liam McDermott, Evan O’Brien 1-5 (0-2fs).

Subs used: Sean McDonnell 0-1 for Naughton 22 mins, Ian Lonergan for Robbie Higgins 41 mins, Colin Barrett for McDermott 45 mins, Jordan McGrath for Dowling 57 mins, Brendan Reddy for Newman 57 mins, Cian Christie for Naughton 58 mins, David Brannigan 0-1 for Sourke 60 mins.

Ballymore Eustace: Stephen Foley; Ciaran Kelleher, Keith Conway, Stephen Doyle, Stephen Davis, Michael Stewart Byrne 0-1, Caolan Halpin 0-2 (0-1f), Shane Barrett, Patrick Murphy, Stephen Dwyer, Joe Broderick 0-2, Aaron Deegan 0-1, Enda Stewart Byrne, Niall Murphy 0-5 (0-3fs), Jamie Curran.

Subs used: Brian Crowe for Kelleher 17 mins, Mark Slevin for Enda Stewart Byrne h-t, Danny Gorman for Curran 51 mins, Evan Keogh for Davis 55 mins.

Ref: Stephen Foley

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