Ger Dennigan inspired Cashel as the South Longford club booked their place in the Intermediate Football Championship semi-final with 14 points to spare over Ballymore in the final Group 1 fixture at Devine Park, Edgeworthstown on Saturday evening last.
Dennigan was influential throughout and Ballymore simply couldn’t handle him. At times though they gave Cashel a few problems but in the end it was all too easy for Cashel who grabbed two late goals to seal their win in style.
Without Aidan Rowan and Gary Kenny, Cashel started their championship campaign off poorly but a narrow win over Ardagh a few weeks ago gave them hope and two more wins in a row now puts them in the last four against neighbouring rivals Rathcline.
The opening minutes were tight and it was Ballymore who opened the scoring with a fantastic long range point from Padraig Kavanagh. Cashel replied with a point from Ronan Healy before Damien Monaghan edged Ballymore back in front.
Three points in a row put Cashel ahead by two before Kavanagh replied with another good point. Ballymore then lost Kevin Flynn when he was black carded.
Cashel ended the first half well with three points from Ger Dennigan (one free) and Keith Carberry to give them a five point lead going in at the break, 0-8 to 0-3.
Ballymore got the opening score of the second half with a nice point from Damien Monaghan. Cashel responded with a nice one-two between Shane Merrigan and Dennigan and the latter landed a point.
Ballymore, to their credit, kept plugging and Padraig Kavanagh was on the mark again in the 36th minute but Dennigan scored another point and then got his side’s first goal in the 40th minute.
Stephen Gorman replied with a point for Ballymore. Minutes later, Andrew Farrell set up Dennigan for another score. In the 50th minute Cashel’s Shane Muldoon was sent off for a second yellow card offence and Kiel Dempsey converted the resulting free.
Once again, Cashel took control of the game and hit over three more points before they were awarded a penalty which Ronan Healy fired over the bar.
Andrew Farrell got Cashel’s second goal before Kiel Dempsey scored a consolation goal from a penalty for Ballymore. Gavin Kelly got Cashel’s third goal in stoppage time as they ran out most emphatic winners.
CASHEL: Ger Neilon; Ronan Farrell, Ronan Muldoon, Ciaran Killian; Mel Farrell, Padraig Farrell, Shane Muldoon; Luke Casey, Andrew Farrell (1-0); Conan Casey, Gavin Kelly (1-1), Shane Merrigan; Keith Carberry (0-3), Ger Dennigan (1-8, 2 frees), Ronan Healy (0-3, 1f, 1 penalty).
Subs:- Corie Carberry for C Killian (47 mins); Shane Bannon for C Casey (53 mins); Kevin Farrell for K Carberry (55 mins); Mark Murtagh for M Farrell (59 mins); K Carberry for K Farrell (injured, third minute of stoppage time).
BALLYMORE: Mark Tighe; Philip Dawson, Ciaran Fahy, Peter Walker; Kevin Flynn, Mark Clarke, Conor Monaghan; Mel Creegan, Donal McElvaney; Padraig Kavanagh (0-3), Damien Monaghan (0-2), Liam Gorman; Mattie Gorman, Kiel Dempsey (1-1, goal from penalty), Vinny Walker.
Subs:- Michael Flynn for K Flynn (black card, 26 mins); Stephen Gorman (0-1) for M Flynn (32 mins); Dessie Flynn for L Gorman (51 mins); Sean Corr for P Walker (53 mins).
Referee: John Hughes (Killoe Emmet Og).