IFC: Teevan's late strike rescues Rories a replay

September 18, 2017

Belturbet's Mark Teevan

Ballyhaise 0-9
Belturbet 1-6

Ballyhaise and Belturbet will have to do it all again after Mark Teevan's injury-time point saw them finish all square in tonight's intermediate championship semi-final at Kingspan Breffni.

In what was a heated encounter, both teams finished up with 14 men while Ballyhaise lost in-form attacker Padraig Moore to a black card in the opening quarter of an hour.

It was Ciaran O'Malley's side that led by two at half-time, with accurate efforts from Kevin Tierney and Sean McCormack the only difference at that stage, but the first 10 minutes of the restart belonged to their counterparts in maroon.

Fionnan O'Reilly's goal nine minutes into the second period had the Rories in the ascendancy and seemingly humming but, after shipping a quick 1-2, the Annalee Park outfit were able to weather the storm and draw matters level by the 50th minute.

Both sides saw goal chances fall by the wayside after that and just as McCormack looked to have sent Ballyhaise into a third IFC final in four years, substitute Teevan was able send one over in the dying stages for the Padraig Dolan's charges and save them another chance.

Fionnan O'Reilly's brilliant point from 45 metres settled the town side well into this last four clash prior to David Brady responding in kind at the other end for the 2015 champions.

Cian Vaughan broke away from his man long enough to steer the Rories back in front and when Mark Lawlor landed a sublime '45' it was met by a mighty roar from the fired-up Belturbet contingent.

A Tierney free trimmed the difference back to the minimum on 11 minutes for Ballyhaise but they'd take a massive hit shortly afterwards when they lost Moore to a black card after the full-forward had clashed with marker Stuart Dunne.

Things really heated up from that point up until half-time when, incidentally, Moore's replacement Barry Reilly was red-carded on the interval's eve.

Soon after Martin Conaty's leveller on 14 minutes the chaos really began to break out in and around Belturbet's 45-metre line. While there could, and perhaps should, have been players from both sides getting their marching orders, referee Oliver Og O'Reilly's only action at the time was to issue a caution to substitute Reilly.

Rories full-forward Brendan Fitzpatrick saw red soon afterwards however, which rules him out of next weekend's replay, with the Mullahoran official acting on the advice of his umpires this time round.

A Tierney free and a fine long range effort from McCormack had Ballyhaise two up at the break (0-5 to 0-3), but not before they were reduced to 14 themselves as a result of Reilly's dismissal.

A sweet left-footed point from Conal McGinley was just what the doctor ordered for the Rories at the start of the second-half and within five minutes of the restart they'd be all square after Enda Henry tapped over a free which he had earned himself.

Tierney set-up McCormack for his second eye-catching score of the night, ushering O'Malley's men back in front, but more good work from Henry would reap Belturbet max profit in the 39th minute.

After turning over Ballyhaise in their own half-forward line, Dolan's men broke forward and found their playmaker along the right flank and while his slick cut inside saw possession spill from his grasp, Fionnan O'Reilly was quickest to the loose ball on the floor and he fired home low for all three points.

Needless to say, it was looking like a Belturbet-Shercock final at that stage, with 20 minutes remaining, but Tierney grabbed the favourites two salient points (one a free) to steady the ship big time for him and his team mates.

Belturbet very nearly hit Gary O'Rourke's net again in the 51st minute after Sean Og Lawlor was threaded through the centre but the substitute blazed his shot just wide of Gary O'Rourke's post, allowing Ballyhaise to breathe a sight of relief. 

Tierney could have goaled himself a minute later but some late pressure from Belturbet's well-organised defence saw him opt to try and fist over and the ball dropped wide instead. Moments later, the former Cavan forward had what appeared to be a decent penalty shout turned down by O'Reilly, who ruled for over-carrying and awarded a free out instead.

A goal at that stage would have surely won it for either team and when McCormack bored through a wall of maroon to loft over his third in the 58th minute that even looked to be enough for Ballyhaise.

Belturbet remained resolute to the finish though and after some patient build-up play they found Teevan in some space on his favoured left foot to secure another shot at the big stage.

Ballyhaise: Gary O'Rourke; Darren Reilly, Mark Brennan, Stephen Kane; Desmond Reilly, Shane Briody, Marcus Duffy; Conor Lyons, Sean McCormack (0-3); Martin Conaty (0-1), Kevin Tierney (0-4, 2f), Aodhagan Watters; Colm Reilly, Padraig Moore, David Brady (0-1). Subs: Barry Reilly for P Moore (12mins, BC), Michael Brady for S Kane (55), Conor McEntee for C Reilly (60).

Belturbet: Danny Anscombe; Shane Fitzpatrick, Mark Lawlor (0-1, '45), Peter Shannon; Niall O'Reilly, Kevin McConnell, Conal McGinley (0-1); Damien O'Reilly, Eoin McGuigan; Stuart Dunne, Fionnan O'Reilly (1-1), Niall Lawlor; Cian Vaughan (0-1), Enda Henry (0-1), Brendan Fitzpatrick. Subs: Mark Teevan (0-1) for M Lawlor (38mins), Sean Og Lawlor for E McGuigan (43), Donal McDonald for N Lawlor (50), Luke Smith for C Vaughan (55).

Ref: Oliver Og O'Reilly (Mullahoran)

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