(This report appeared on the Westmeah Examiner in November 1994 and has been reproduced here with their kind permission)
Ballinagore 0-09 Milltown 0-08
Ballinagore won the Junior Football league for the second year running when they recorded a narrow one point victory over a determined Milltown team in an exciting game played in Ballynacargy on Sunday last. In so doing they clinched they second title of the year adding the league title to the championship crown they won over the same opposition. Played before a sizeable crowd these two old rivals porduced a typical spirited encounter with the outcome remaining in doubt up to the final whistle.
Ballinagore were first to attack with Martin Seery placing Louis Ennis who drove low to the bottom corner. However, Milltown goalkeeper Frank Finneran was very alert and delected the ball out for a 45. Milltown attacked in the third minute and pointed when Eamonn Doolin's quick free found Michael Dillon who sent over the bar. Ballinagore opened their scoring in the 5th minute when Martin Seery pointed a 25 metres free after Norman Maxwell was fouled. They took the lead two minutes later when Jimmy Marshall scored a good point after being placed by Dermot Connell. A futher Ballinagore attack involving Ger Connell and Paul Seery was cleared by David Molloy on the Milltown line. Tom Ballesty was wide for Milltown before Eddie Somers levelled the scores in the 10th minute with a point.
Milltown then took the lead when Michael Dillon placed Pete Ballesty who pointed. Michael Dillon was to the fore again one minute later, this time placing Eamonn Hynes who rifled over a point. Ballinagore closed the gap in the 13th minute when Paul Seery pointed after being placed by Peter Robinson. Both sides exchanged wides before Milltown missed a good goal chance when in running forward Eddie Somers and Michael Dillon collided with one another. The clearance from the Ballinagore defence to Pete Ballesty resulted in a point. Milltown increased their lead further in the 20th minute when Tom Ballesty was fouled and the resulting free was converted by himself. Milltown were beginning to dominate the game at this stage with Damien Gunning and Noel Crinnegan winning the midfield battle and they increased the lead further when Pete Ballesty pointed. However, they failed to put their dominance on the scoreboard when their forwards kicked three bad wides in a row.
Milltown continued to apply the pressure and Tom Ballesty put five points between the sides in the 23rd minute following good work by Eddie Somers and Damien Gunning. Tom McHugh and Jimmy Rabbitt had good clearances for Milltown at this stage while Rory O'Brien and Peter Robinson cleared for Ballinagore. Ballinagore closed the gap in the 28th minute when Paul Seery and Dermot Connell combined to place Martin Seery who was fouled on the 13 metre line. The resulting free was converted by Martin Seery. Sean Claffey and Ger Connell broke up Milltown attacks with David Molloy clearing for Milltown to leave the half time score Milltown 0-08, Ballinagore 0-04.
Ballinagore resumed the second half by bringing their full forward Norman Maxwell to midfield and Brendan Robinson to full forward. Maxwell soon began to dominate the midfield area and continued to do so for the remainder of the half. The first score of the second half came in the 33rd minute when Martin Seery pointed a free after Brendan Robinson was fouled following a good solo run by Louis Ennis. Both sides exchanged wides before Louis Ennis closed the gap further when he pointed after being placed by Paul Seery in the 40th minute. John Duncan replaced Eamonn Hynes on the Milltown team. The next ten minutes was a see-saw affair with Rory O'Brien, Sean Claffey, Norman Maxwell making good clearances for Ballinagore and Brendan Kiernan, John Dillon, Tom Dillon doing likewise for Milltown.
In the 50th minute Eamonn Doolin was fouled on the 20 metre line. The free, taken by Tom Ballesty dropped short and was cleared by Enda McCann to Louis Ennis. In the best passing movement of the game involving Louis Ennis, Norman Maxwell, Sean Robinson, Brendan Robinson and Norman Maxwell again, the move ended with Maxwell kicking an excellent point. Cristoir Ennis replaced Jimmy Marshall on the Ballinagore team and was involved in the game straight away when placed by Dermot Connell for what looked like a goal chance. However Cristoir opted to go for his point only to see it deflect off the upright and wide. Ballinagore kept pressing and a Martin Seery point from a free saw the sides level in the 54th minute, following a good move involving Sean Robinson and Louis Ennis.
It was all Ballinagore at this stage and a good move started by Paul Seery and carried on by Cristoir Ennis and Dermot Connell was finished by Martin Seery who drove over the bar to regain the lead for Ballinagore. Gerry Claffey was now on the Ballinagore team in place of the injured Dermot Connell. Milltown tried hard to get back into the match with Brendan Kiernan, John Dillon and Pete Ballesty prominent but John Durkan and Rory O'Brien denied them with good defensive work. Eamonn Doolin was narrowly wide with a sideline kick in the 59th minute. The game finished three minutes later with Sean Robinsons relieving clearance following a block on Damien Gunning much to the relief of the Ballinagore supporters. Overall Ballinagore deserved theur victory with their more consistent performance throughout while Milltown will rue the fact they failed to score in the second half.
Ballinagore: Stephen Brudell, Sean Claffey, John Durkan, Enda McCann, Peter Robinson, Rory O'Brien, Ger Connell, Paul Seery (0-1), Brendan Robinson, Louis Ennis (0-1), Sean Robinson, Dermot Connell, Martin Seery (0-5), Norman Maxwell (0-1), Jimmy Marshall. Subs: Cristoir Ennis for Jimmy Marshall, Gerry Claffey Snr for Dermot Connell.
Milltown: Frank Finneran, Tom McHugh, David Molloy, Jimmy Rabbitt, Brendan Kiernan, Tom Dillon, John Dillon, Noel Crinnegan, Damien Gunning, Tom Ballesty (0-2), Pete Ballesty (0-3), Eamonn Doolin, Michael Dillon (0-1), Eddie Somers (0-1), Eamonn Hynes (0-1). Sub: John Duncan for Eamonn Hynes.
Referee: Mick Gordon, Shandonagh.