Sunday morning on the AWP Ballinteer Minor Hurlers took on Cuala in the B Championship Final. There was a great atmosphere at the pitch with a huge crowd in attendance. The weather had picked up from the previous two days of high winds and rain. Ballinteer played in to the St Attractas end in the first half with a slight wind in assistance. It took a little time for both teams to settle down with a few missed scoring chances from St Johns early on. The match settled down and you could see it was going to be a close encounter with scoring pretty even from both sides. The free takers were on form with Sean Casserly from St Johns slotting over a couple of nice frees which helped settle the team. Mid way through the second half Patrick O’Reilly surged forward on a couple of occasions to slot home two huge points. This helped give momentum to St Johns who went in at half time 0-8 to 0-5 ahead.
The teams turned around for the second half and it was clear from the first few exchanges that the Cuala lads had upped the tempo and started putting pressure on the Ballinteer backline. A few frees were conceded which were punished ruthlessly by Cuala. Mid way through the second half Cuala levelled the match at 10 points each. It was a case of which team would find that little bit extra to kick on and take the match. Cuala slotted over a huge free from inside their own half to edge one point ahead. To their credit the Ballinteer lads responded with a great point from Tom Ahearne to bring the match level again. The next few scores would be vital with Cuala picking off a long range point which for a few seconds while the referee and linesmen deliberated the fans didn’t know which way they would call it. The point was awarded to Cuala and it seemed to give them a boost. The last few minutes were a real battle with the Cuala team coming out on top on a final score of Cuala 0-16 St Johns 0-11.
It was bitter disappointment for the St Johns team, mentors and supporters on the day. The lads had given so much through the whole campaign it was tough to see the cup going to the Dalkey team. Congratulations to Cuala they played very well and ran out deserving winners. Our congratulations and thanks to the St Johns team and mentors you did the club proud right through the campaign.
Team: Jack Kennally, Patrick Hopkins, Simon O’Reilly, Stephen Mulvaney, Ciaran Rafter, Eoghan FitzPatrick, Joe Waters, Patrick O’Reilly 0-2, Barry Mannion, Jack Ball, Sean Casserly 0-8, Padraic O’hEithir, Micheal O’Cronin, Tadhg Brennan, Tom Ahearne 0-1, Subs: Cathal Kissane for Ball, Cian Shelly for O’hEithir, Cian O’Dwyer for Brennan, Michael Sutton, Jack Walsh, Sean Roe.
Injured: Ben Broderick, Brian Smith, Joe Barcoe, Conor Meegan, and Evan O’Flaherty.
Mentors: Shane Casserly, Hugh Carroll Fionan Clabby and Oisín Power.