Killinkere 0-13 Belturbet 1-09
One point was all that separated Killinkere and Belturbet at the final whistle last Saturday after an unlikely comeback from the maroon visitors fell just short. Trailing by nine points just after the start of the second half, Belturbet will no doubt rue the 14 wides and three missed goal chances that could have painted a very different outcome.
In the opening attack of the match, the mercurial Jason Reilly almost found the net only for his shot to deflect off the outside of the post, Damien Sexton opened the scoring for Killinkere three minutes in, with frees from Darren Smith and Emmett Fitzsimons extending their lead. Peter McCabe then engineered himself a goal opportunity but opted to take the point. Wing-half back Breen Smith then popped up with another point for the home side ten minutes in to leave Killinkere were in total command,
Fitzsimons tagged on another point on 12 minutes but to Belturbet’s credit they began to take back control around the middle third. Their downfall however was that while Killinkere were clinical, they were anything but. Their only only score of the first half came thanks to a Connell McGinley 45 after 15 minutes. Jason Reilly was nearly in for a goal again but this time he hit the other post. Three wides and another spurned goal opportunity later, Belturbet hadn’t made their dominance count and the Killinkere forward line made them pay.
After struggling to muster an attack for ten minutes, Darren Smith didn’t need to be asked twice when he pointed from distance to get things back on track. Peter McCabe and the aforementioned Smith would add another two scores before the break to give Killinkere a 0-9 to 0-1 lead.
They opened the second half in similar fashion with pointed free from Emmett Fitzsimons extending their lead but that would be their last score for 17 minutes. Slowly but surely Belturbet started to reduce the deficit. Scores from Reilly, Cormac Rudden, McGinley and two frees from Enda Henry narrowed the gap to four. Another free from Fitzsimons granted Killinkere momentary reprieve but the visitors were in total control of possession. However, Belturbet’s penchant for wasting chances would be their ruination as time and time again the ball fell harmlessly wide from either poor shooting or over-hit passes.
The home side again punished them. Twice in the space of a minute, Peter McCabe came deep to receive possession. Both times he wheeled away from his marker and back towards the Belturbet goal at the speed of someone arriving late for mass and both times it garnered the same result as he set up Emmett Fitzsimons for two scores to give Killinkere a four point cushion going into injury time.
Belturbet full forward scored a fantastic goal deep into injury time, rifling a shot from a good 15 yards into the top corner but it would prove to be mere consolation as the referee blew for full time after the subsequent kick-out. A good win for Killinkere whose forward line looks like they will prove a tough force for any defence to contend with.
Killinkere: Brian Clarke (0-1 OP), Martin Reilly, Finbarr Smith, Liam McCabe, Myles O’Reilly, Micheal Duff, Breen Smith (0-1), Noel McGovern, Kevin McCabe, Anthony Brady, Emmett Fitzsimons (0-6(3f)), Darren Smith (0-3(1f)), Damien Sexton (0-1), Louis Fay-Cooper, Peter McCabe (0-2).
Belturbet: Danny Anscome, Conor Crossan-Brady, Peter Shannon, Shane Corby, Kevin McConnell, Niall O’Reilly, Killian O’Reilly, Eoin McGuigan, Cein Vaughan, Cormac Rudden (0-1), Enda Henry (0-3(3f)), Connell McGinley (0-2)(2 45m), Jason O’Reilly (0-1), Barry O’Reilly (1-0), Niall Lawlor(0-1).