Kilbride 0-15 Ballivor 0-12
Kilbride ensured that there push for promotion continued when they over came a stern test from Intermediate side Ballivor on Saturday evening.
Surely Kilbride are in the running for grounds of the year because in the sunshine the pitch looked immaculate and with one game left the hosts are still in with a shout of promotion.
Kilbride playing into the breeze registered there first point after a minute which was a monster from midfielder David O'Leary. The sides traded points before Ballivor with the aid of a breeze reeled of three to lead by two after ten minutes. Joseph Donnelly reduced the deficit to one as he converted a free on fourtheen minutes. A brace from captain Jeff Sheridan put Kilbride back in front in the twenty first and twenty third minute. Again Ballivor responded with a point of there own. Playing into the breeze was not a concern for the hosts, excellent defending and counter attacking football was yielding success for the Kilbride men. Two points, one from midfielder John Bruton on twenty four and another fine effort from his midfield partner O'Leary put them two up as they approach half time. Ballivor would end the scoring with another pointed free to leave the bare minium at half time. Kilbride could and should have been further ahead but they were guilty of conceeding some easy frees.
Half time Kilbride 0-7 Ballivor 0-6.
As with so many games in the past especially against Intermediate teams Kilbride of old would have struggled come the second half but not this group. Aided by the breeze they were excellent in the second half. A strong showing from Karl Stapelton, Stephen Walsh and Finbar Clarke prevented the visitors from creating any real clear chances like the first half frees were keeping them in touch. A brace from Donnelly put Kilbride two up with ten minutes played in the second half. A five minute spell which yielded four points was what secured the win, the first on fourty nine minutes from David O'Leary was soon followed by the score of the match on fifty when Michael Farrell slotted over after fine inter change play which started in there own full back line. Another point from Donnelly when he might have had a goal on fifty one was soon followed as Jeff Sheridan took his tally to three to put the hosts six clear. Ballivor were struggling to penetrate and soft frees allowed them keep in touch. Further points from captain Jeff Sheridan and an excellent fisted score from Bruton pushed it back to five. Ballivor scored the last two points but it was too little too late as Kilbride registered there seventh win of the league campaign on a score line of Kilbride 0- 15 Ballivor 0-12..
This was an excellent performance, it was controlled, it had pace and alot of lads worked extremely hard. The only blemish would be some of the frees that were conceed were soft. That been said at times the defence were excellent, Dave Barron manned the square with great purpose and he was well supported by Stephen Walsh Finbar Clarke, Dean and Karl Stapelton. The experience of Bruton and athleticism of O Leary in the engine room is the link to the lads up front. With the balance of youth and experience brings a great blend and with the likes of Brian White and Jeff Sheridan around defences will have to be at there best to stop them.
Kilbride: Conor Storey. Dean Stapelton. Dave Barron. Karl Stapelton. Finbar Clarke. Stephen Walsh. Gareth Walsh. David O Leary 0-3. John Bruton 0-2. Callum McGovern. Michael Farrell 0-2. Cathal McKeown. Joseph Donnelly 0-4. Jeff Sheridan 0-4. Brian White. Subs. John Smyth for K Stapelton. Jake McGovern for C McKeown.