BALLYMACNAB 0-11 MADDEN 0-07
The history books of the Round Towers were once again re-wrote last Saturday as our Seniors were crowned County Intermediate Champions for the fist time. After winning the Junior in 1999 at the eight attempt it was only fitting that they claimed the Intermediate at the first attempt. The Nab came into the game totally focused and any thoughts of an upset were quickly dashed.
The game itself was in doubt in some peoples eyes due to the heavy rain early on Saturday morn and continuing to the afternoon but credit must be given to the Keady Dwyers club for having the pitch in such excellent conditions. The Nab had a shaky start to the game, kicking a number of wides, as Madden took an early lead with a point on the 3rd minute. The Nab levelled the scores on the 10th minute from a point from Paul Kennedy. As the Nab began to get into their stride they easily added further points from James Gray, Pauric Gribben and Brian McCone. However, Madden responded with two points to leave just a point between the sides at the interval.
In the second half the Nab came out bursting with confidence and on the 37th minute an excellent block by James Gray was followed by him kicking over another point. A minute later, Barry O’Hare’s bursting run into attack was meet by a foul on him and Brian McCone kicked over the resulting free. The game could have been as good as over on the 40th minute only for Pauric Gribben’s shot at goal being saved by the Madden keeper but when the ball broke to Michael Beagan who sensibly knocked the ball over the bar. The Nab were dominating all area of the park and in particular their defence was excellent. Points from James Gray and substitute Damien McGeown quickly cancelled out a point for Madden on the 50th minute on. The Nab’s ability to make quick responses to Madden’s threat more or less summed up the day.
Three late points from Madden left just two points between the sides going into injury time but two points from Brian McCone secured the victory. At the final whistle, there were scenes of high emotion as the Nab players and supporters embraced each other. County Chairman Joe Jordan presented the Atty Hearty Cup to Ballymacnab team captain Paudi Beagan. The Nab had heroes all over the field with defence playing particularly will, especially Chris Loughran, Dwayne McParland and Paudi Beagan. Michael Beagan worked tirelessly over the hour with the ever reliable James Gray and Brian McCone in fine scoring form. Credit must also be given to the team management of Sean Hughes and Brendan Maguire who had the lads in tremendous shape and totally focused in the job they had in hand.
The team were chauffeured back to a tour of Ballymacnab and received a huge welcome at the hall were all the Nab supporters partied into the early hours of Sunday morning.
Sean Hughes; Chris Loughran; Dwayne McParland; Paudi Beagan (Capt); Sean McArdle; Philip McCone; Barry O’Hare; Gary McKee; Richard Gribben; Michael Beagan (0-1); Paul Kennedy (0-1); Joe Gribben; James Gray (0-3); Pauric Gribben (0-1); Brian McCone (0-4). Subs: Damien McGeown (0-1) for J.Gribben; Sean Lynch; Dominic McCormack; Peter Beagan; Tony Gribben; Paul McKee; Ciaran McCleary; Brendan Gribben; Nelius Boyle; Niall Gribben; Adrian McCone; Chris Kennedy; Ambrose McCormack; Ciaran Martin; Steven Kennedy; Eugene Mackin; Brian Cosgrove; Raymond McCone