Ballymac perform Lazarus act to end 51-year wait for a district title

Stacks led by nine points with just 13 minutes remaining
Ballymac perform Lazarus act to end 51-year wait for a district title


St Brendan's SFC Final: Ballymacelligott 2-13 Austin Stacks 2-11 

It's not over til' it's over! There is nothing more rewarding in sport that a dramatic comeback. Just ask Ballymacelligott who looked to be in an impossible position as they trailed Austin Stacks 2-9 to 0-6 with the clock showing 46 minutes gone in this inaugural Tralee-St Brendan's District Board SFC final at the Austin Stack Park.

Stacks had run their bench and must have been confident of victory against a Ballymac side whose last District Championship success was in 1971 when it was the Castleisland District they played in. 

First-half goals from Adam Curran and Jordan Kissane and some superb points by Donagh McKivergan (whose younger brother plays with Ballymac) saw managerless Stacks lead 2-6 to 0-5 at half-time with Aidan Breen (3), Dylan Dunne and Padraig McCarthy getting on the scoresheet for Ballymac.

Three third-quarter points from Jordan Kissane, Kerry senior Jack O’Shea, and Adam Curran saw Stacks push further ahead as Aidan Breen kicked another free.

It was still a nine-point game with just 13 minutes remaining and then like a bolt out of the blue, Ballymac struck for a goal that flipped this final in its head. Aidan Breen threaded a pass through to Donal Daly who was fouled 25 metres from goal. Stacks protested and the referee moved it closer. The quick-thinking Daly drove it powerfully to the net as Stacks continued their protests.

Ballymac had momentum with Darragh Broderick now on with a broken bone in his hand. Aidan Breen moved out to the forty and added a point, as did Adam Sheehy. A four-point game with six left. Breen then fired over from almost fifty metres but McKivergan converted a mark.

Daire Keane then kicked a point before Ballymac scored another goal two minutes from time. Breen found Darragh Regan and while he was denied by a point-blank save by keeper Ben Quilter, Darragh Broderick finished the rebound to the net — incredibly it was 2-11 apiece.

Ballymac keeper Frank O’Rahilly made a stunning block to deny Stacks a late winner and it was left to Darragh Broderick and man of the match Aidan Breen to kick over the points that made Ballymac the first winners of the Tralee-St Brendans District SFC.

Scorers for Ballymac: A Breen (0-8, 6 frees, 1 45); D Broderick (1-1); D Daly (mark), D Dunne, P McCarthy, D Keane and A Sheehy (0-1 each) 

Scorers for Austin Stacks: D McKivergan (0-5, 2 marks), A Curran (1-2), J Kissane (1-1, 1 free), L Chester, J O’Shea and E Carroll (0-1 each) 

BALLYMACELLIGOTT: F O’Rahilly; D Sweeney, D O’Shea, D Dunne; C Counihan, M Reidy, A Joy; T Brick, C Dunne; P McCarthy, D O’Regan, D Daly; B Lyons, A Breen, D Keane.

Subs: A Sheehy for B Lyons (ht), J O’Keeffe for D Dunne (34), M Herlihy for A Joy (40), D Broderick for P McCarthy (42).

AUSTIN STACKS: B Quilter; L Chester, B Shanahan, P O’Sullivan; A Curran, J O’Shea, E Carroll; W Guthrie, M O’Donnell; C O’Connell, J Kissane, J Morgan; D McKivergan, G Fitzgerald, C Myers.

Subs: C Dillane for C O’Connell (ht), R O’Connell for C Myers (ht), G Sheehan for G Fitzgerald (38), G Scanlon for A Curran (47), A Morrissey for J Kissane (47).

Referee: M Hennessy (Ballyduff)

More in this section

Sport Push Notifications

By clicking on 'Sign Up' you will be the first to know about our latest and best sporting content on this browser.

Sign Up

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up
Execution Time: 0.276 s