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'Nab rally to reach Semi Final (21/09/19)

posted 22 Sept 2019, 08:56 by ballymacnab armagh   [ updated 22 Sept 2019, 08:57 ]


Ballymacnab 2-12 Pearse Ogs 0-10


Pearse Ogs would have been delighted with how their game plan was playing out after 30 minutes of action with the sides drawn at half time, while the Nab never got their noses in front during the entire first half. But the second half was a different game and a Jack Grugan inspired Ballymacnab powered home to a comfortable eight point victory.

The Nab struggled with the Ogs tactic of dropping men deep behind the ball, often having two or three men sitting back in front of Jack Grugan to deny the big full forward any space or possession. And it was the city side that opened the scoring with two points in as many minutes through James Freeman and Paul Duffy.

Ballymacnab levelled with two points of their own with a Grugan free before Pauric Gribben hit the equalising point in the 9th minute. Pearse Ogs tagged on the next three points to take the lead with Paul Duffy splitting the posts followed by a Justin Graham free and a James Freeman point, the score now 0-5 to 0-2.

The final 10 minutes of the opening half belonged to Ballymacnab as they outscored their opponents 4-1 and it was important to get on level terms before the short whistle. Gavin McParland saw his effort on goal tipped over the crossbar by the Ogs number one Ryan Kearney before McParland hit his second point.

Justin Graham swung over another free but Ballymacnab got the final two points to see the sides level at the break. Jack Grugan struck a mighty point from beyond the 45 metre line while Ryan Kennedy burst forward from his defensive duties to raise a white flag to see the score Pearse Ogs 0-6 Ballymacnab 0-6 at the interval.

The game was essentially put to bed within the first ten minutes of the second half, with Ballymacnab taking the Ogs defence for 1-2. The Nab may not have led in the opening 30 minutes but it didn’t take long for the Round Towers to edge ahead with Gavin McParland sending the ball over within 60 seconds of the second half.

Jack Grugan then hit the net for the first goal of the contest, meaning the Ogs would have to push up to keep in the game, allowing more gaps to appear in their defence. James Freeman pulled one back for the men in green and gold but his score was soon cancelled out with an Oisin McGivern free.

The Nabs number 14 was split the posts once again for his third point while Gavin McParland showed great composure and power to drive through the Ogs defence and fire the ball across the goal for Jemmy Gray to palm the ball into an empty net and put his side eight points ahead, 2-9 to 0-7.

Paul Duffy knocked over a point from the dead ball while James Freeman tagged on another for the Ogs. Pearse Ogs had to work extremely hard for the scores only to see them matched by two Brian McCone efforts while Grugan was proving impossible to deal with as he was on the end of another Ballymacnab attack.

The Ogs hit the final score of the evening with their captain Paul Duffy striking in the 63rd minute but the game was well away from them by this stage. Pearse Ogs made serious strides this season and are an improving team but Ballymacnab just had too much experience and strength on this occasions to win 2-12 to 0-10.


Team: Conor McGivern, Ciaran Connolly (Capt), Ryan Kennedy (0-1), Chris Loughran, Sean Lynch, Rúairí Gribben, James Gray (1-0), Cormac Gribben, Pauric Gribben (0-1), Paul Meegan, Oisin McGivern (0-1), Ryan Watters, Rory Grugan, Jack Grugan (1-4), Gavin McParland (0-3). Subs: Brian McCone (0-2) for C.Gribben, Michael Beagan for C.Loughran, Dominic McParland for S.Lynch, Niall McKee for R.Watters, Colm McKee for C.Conolly, Cormac McKee for J.Grugan.