Ballinamore Post Primary Schools' interest in the Connacht Colleges Senior C Championship came to a quick end last Thursday in Elphin when a much slicker and better drilled St. Joseph's Charlestown proved far too strong on the day.
St Joseph's 2-7
The Mayo school, drawn mainly from the one club team, were good value for their ten point victory as their precision passing and intelligent play over-came what was a physically imposing Ballinamore outfit but a side who lacked the team-work of their Mayo men.
Unlike plenty of Leitrim teams in the past, this Ballinamore team didn't lack for size or physicality but they didn't have the same precision as the Charlestown lads, particularly when it came to passing, often relying on huge high balls rather than the accurate low passes that the Mayo men used to punch holes in the Ballinamore defence.
The strange thing is that while Ballinamore struggled to put scores on the board, they did have a lot of the ball but couldn't show the sort of killer instinct that the Mayo lads possessed.
Stephen McTague worked hard in the middle of the field, Kevin Banks made a couple of good stops in the Ballinamore goal while Stephen Gilheany, Donal Wrynn and Mark McGrory tried their best against an impressively drilled Charlestown.
Perhaps the delayed start to the game did not help when the appointed referee failed to appear for the 12.30 throw-in. Apparently he was unable to make the game but neglected to inform Connacht GAA officials who had to scramble to find an official, referee Haulie Beirne dashing from work and without time to change into gear to start the match some 45 minutes late.
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