Ballysaggart march into provincial final

Munster Clun Junior Hurling semi final Ballysaggart Waterford vBallysaggart                              1-12

Knockshegowna (Tipperary)      1-05

Waterford junior hurling champions Ballysaggart had it all their own way for most of this Munster club semi-final against Tipperary representatives Knocksegowna before winning in the end by seven points.

Played in front of an attendance of 768 at Fraher Field on Sunday last the West Waterford side had a much more comfortable victory than in their previous outing against the Cork champions.

Stephen Bennett opened the scoring for the winners with a long distance free from inside his own half after two minutes.

Ballysaggart wing-back Barry Murphy hit two long range points from play before Stephen Bennett added his second from a 65′ to leave them 0-4 to 0-0 after 15 minutes.

Declan Costello hit two points from frees in succession to give some hope to the North Tipperary side that were beaten semi-finalists in the Tipperary Championship and nominated only as a result of their divisional title.

Kieran Bennett and Michael Kearney hit two late points from play to leave Ballysaggart leading 0-6 to 0-2 at half time and save for some overplay would have had a lead more reflective of their dominance.

An early second half Stephen Bennett pointed free was added to by Darren Meagher with a point from play to put the Deise side 0-8 to 0-2 up.

Declan Costello was the lone Knocksegowna scorer all afternoon and hit his third free on 36 minutes.

The game was effectively decided on 38 minutes when Ronan Walsh found Stephen Bennett in space with a pin point accurate pass and the All-Ireland Minor winner rounded his marker before shooting low to the back of the net.

Costello replied with two further pointed frees for the Premier side with Bennett hitting a close in free over the bar for Ballysaggart to leave them 1-9 to 0-5 with 10 minutes remaining. The Bennett brothers Kieran, Shane and Stephen all hit further points from play before Declan Costello had a consolation goal for vanquished on full-time.

Ballysaggart were full value for their win and only 14 wides and some over elaboration prevented them from achieving an even greater winning margin.

They enjoyed complete control in defence with Barry Murphy, Eugene O’Brien and Cailean O’Gorman outstanding. Kieran Bennett, Ronan Walsh and talisman Stephen Bennett were a constant torment to their opponents.

For a disappointing Tipperary side, only Declan Costello managed to catch the eye.

Ballysaggart: Matty Meagher, Bobby Ryan, Kieran Fennessy, Daniel Devine, Barry Murphy, Eugene O’Brien, Cailean O’Gorman, Christy Murphy, Kieran Bennett, Stephen Bennett, Darren Meagher, Ronan Walsh, Michael Kearney, Shane Bennett, Tom Bennett.

Substitutes: Stephen Hale for Michael Kearney, Fergal Meagher for Tom Bennett, Paudie Hale for Shane Bennett and Shane Meagher for Darren Meagher.

Scorers: Stephen Bennett (1-5; 0-3f), Barry Murphy and Kieran Bennett (0-2 each), Shane Bennett, Michael Kearney and Darren Meagher (0-1 each).
Knockshegowna: Richard King, Adrian Browne, David King, Paul King, Michael O’Brien, Damien Bond, Colin Browne, Graham Gohery, Brian Bond, Darren Browne, Eamon Murphy, Scott Hodgins, David Downey, Denis Cahill, Declan Costello.

Substitutes: Fergal Bond for David Downey, Joe Cleary for Eamon Murphy, Michael Kennedy for Brian Bond and Michael Rafferty for Scott Hodgins.

Scorer: Declan Costello (1-5; 0-5f).

Referee: Declan O’Driscoll (Limerick).

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