Pearses U15s beat Ballindereen this evening in Ballymac on a scoreline 4-11 to 3-11 to book their spot in the U15B Shield Final against St. Thomas’. Pearses came into this, somewhat deflated after a big loss to Ahascragh/ Fohenagh last time out. However, they regrouped to put in a fine shift spearheaded by the architectural master Cillian Fahey.
Ballinderreen had the best start and within 3 mins a goal looked certain only for a vital interception by Harry Mitchell but the ball fell out to Ballinderreen’s No 12 who opened their account with a point from play. Straight from the puck out, Fahey collected the breaking ball and went on his trademark weaving run before he smashed to the net for the games first goal. The visitors added 2 from play before Diarmuid Ryan got on the end of a loose ball and fired over down the other end. Ballinderreen added 2 more points before the water break, 1 from play and a free but some wayward shooting kept Pearses in the game. Cilly Fahey pointed a placed ball just before the water break after big Diarmuid was fouled. 1-4 to 1-2 after Q1.
Ballinderreen got the best possible start to Q2 when a high lobbing ball seemed to be tailing wide, got held up with the breeze and their poaching forward whipped first time on the bouncing ball to smash past the advancing Darren Moran in goals who injured himself in the process. Fahey kept Pearses in sight with a point from play but the south Galway side replied with 2 more; 1 from play and a long distance free. Fahey, in his usual pose converted a free from out near the sideline followed by good work from Dylan Roche & Dara Scarry led to the towering Diarmuid being fouled and again Fahey made light work of tapping over the free. The Ballinderreen goalie had to be vigilant to keep out a goal bound effort from Diarmuid Ryan but again Ballinderreen took command with another fine point from play. The injection required came just before half time when big Diarmuid batted to the net with 2 lads hanging off him. Pearses 2-5; Ballinderreen 2-7 at half time.
Cillian Fahey helped drag Pearses back into it straight from the throw in when he went on another trademark solo almost from midfield and his shot deflected of the goalie and into the net. Suddenly Pearses were in front for the first time. Ballinderren replied to level matters. More wayward shooting from Ballinderreen gave Pearses a boost. Pearses then engineered some great scores from Cilly Fahey who tacked on 4 more points on the trot – 2 from play & 2 frees, the 2nd of the frees he won himself getting injured in the process. It was like he got a jab of an EpiPen as all the vim and vigour returned to him also helped by Ballinderreen’s sporting No. 8 who offered him a long slug from the water bottle. Suddenly it was Pearses game to lose at 4 points up. A Ballinderreen free brought it back to 3 points with young Fionn Donohue receiving a yellow card in the process. Fahey put over a fantastic individual effort to put 4 between them again. At this stage, Ballinderreen were throwing the kitchen sink at the lads in black but Harry Mitchell made a spectacular diving save when Darren Moran had wandered out towards the end line in his attempted clearance with the goal left exposed. No. 9 clawed a point back before the end of Q3 to leave a goal between the sides. Pearses 3-10; Ballinderreen 2-10.
Replenished and resuscitated the challenge kicked on again. Pearses were offered a lifeline a minute after the restart when Darren Moran made a great stop, the clearance fell to their forward who unleashed a unmerciful shot which thundered off the crossbar with young Fionn Donohue making the clearance to keep it a 3 point ball game. 6 mins in Harry fouled the inrushing No. 12 and the ref awarded a penalty. Harry himself, stood between the posts and although he got a hurl to it, it still found the net. 3-10 apiece. The Ballinderreen lads went a point up moments later from play but instead of a towel being thrown in, Pearses regrouped and gave it their all for the final few minutes. A great run from Anthony Feeney down the wing towards the endline saw him cross into the square where Cilly Fahey picked up the breaking ball to squeeze it just over the crossbar – an inch or 2 lower would have raised a green flag. Draw match – 3-11 apiece. With minutes left, Pearses finished out with their tails on their backs. A long free from Harry Mitchell at the back into the square was picked up by Fahey who found the net to get the job done and finish off an all-round exceptional display from him with a personal tally of 3-10, 3-5 from play. Final score: Pearses 4-11; Ballinderreen 3-11. A Shield Final against St. Thomas next week awaits, it promises to be another cracker!
Scorers: Cillian Fahey 3-10 (0-5F); Diarmuid Ryan 1-1.
Panel: Darren Moran, Conor Hillary, Harry Mitchell, Fionn Donohue, Cian Burke, Jonah Donnellan, Dylan Roche, Cillian Fahey, Anthony Feeney, Padraic Kelly, Dara Scarry, David Walsh, Conor Walsh, Diarmuid Ryan, Kyle McDonagh, Jack Kenny, Keith Kitt, Eoghan Ryan.