Luke Connolly’s hat-trick inspires the Nemo Rangers through the BallinCollig Test


Cork Premier SFC qf: Nemo Rangers 5-7 Ballincolig 0-14

A Luke Connolly hat-trick moved the Nemo Rangers to the last count in the third county in four years.

Connolly was in irresistible form during the high octane on Sunday evening, and at times Cork forward, who warmed up in the quarter-finals, was instrumental in creating two goals that did not end.

If the result is set aside, it’s a performance and neo management or players will not be excited.

Yes, they dug into the targets at key moments in the action, especially the green flags of their second half, which, in particular, stemmed from their effectiveness when they hit Balincoolig on the counter, but there were a lot of questions asked about their midfield and defense, and they always did not.

Of course, there were a lot of turnovers across the field that would not satisfy the champions coughing.

The fact that the game had to be changed from its original date due to a Covid case at the BallinCollig Club means that Nemo could quickly return to their semi – finals, with Paul O’Donoghue’s allegations coming back into the whitewash this Sunday and the final against Duhlow for the 2019 county rematch.

What they can read into this weekend’s final round match is that the Duhllo defense will not be as open as half of Balin‌colig. Moreover, the number of goal opportunities they have gifted and engineered will not be abundant next time.

Podzi O’Malley’s Ballinocoling team played a high-risk game that, on broken occasions, exposed them terribly behind. Another day, they could have escaped with such an approach. However, the undeniable class in the Nemo Forward Unit meant that Ballin ‘Collig had time and would be punished again in the counter.

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The first goal in the ninth minute was a gift, and Balin‌kolig resumed Paul Kerrigan’s path. He fed Barry O’Driscoll, offloaded Connolly, smashed the full forward into the net and gave the City men a 1-2 to 0-1 lead.

Balin‌colig worked hard to get back into the game, canceling the first concession of one-third of goals from Cian Dorgen, Darren Murphy and Cian Kaylee.

Parity regained control in the 27th minute (1-4 to 0-7), but Balin‌Collig’s entrepreneurial and energetic first half showed two Nemo goals in the break.

The first of these pairs had its roots in a delicious Connolly pass to Ronan Dalton, which separated Balin‌colig Rigard. He was responsible for finding Dalton and netting Mark Crohn through a large parallel move.

Their third goal was a controversial one, with full-back Liam Jennings doing too hard and trying to avoid the shot when referee David Marine ruled that Peter Morgan had cheated.

When the protest was over, Connolly climbed into the penalty mark and scored the second score of the night.

The 3-4 to 0-7 lead was rough justice to the scoreline Ballin‌kolig, who scored a meaningful goal in the first half off Ivan Cook against Michael Ad Martin.

Colin Moore, Dorgan (free) and Cian Kaylee’s second narrowed the gap to four, 3-5 to 0-10 in the 40th minute. From a difficult angle Darren Murphy immediately tried to turn it into a score game, but his shot fell far short of the target. Nemo came on the field to collect the breaking ball and Luke Connolly completed the move to complete his hat-trick.

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Following on another three BallinCollege points, their Nemo counter resumed their comeback, this time conceding seal to Dolton in the 55th minute, condemning their opponents to a fourth-quarter-final defeat in six seasons.

Scorers for Nemo Rangers: El Connolly (3-3, 1-0 pen, 0-2 freeze, 0-1 ’45); M Cronin (1-2, 0-1 free genetic); R Dalton (1-1); P Kerrigan (0-1).

Scorers for BallinCollig: C Dorgen (born 0-5, 0-2 ’45, 0-1 c); D Murphy (0-4); C Kaylee (0-2); E Cook, C Moore, D Dorgan (0-1 each).

Nemo Rangers: M Adho Martin; A. Cronin, K. Histon, B. Cripps; J Horgan, K O Donovan, S Kronin; P Morgan, J McDermott; C. O’Brien, R. Dalton, B. O. Dris‌col; M. Cronin, El Connolly, P. Kerrigan.

Subs: Morgan C. Horgan (48 minutes); J Morgan (56) B Murphy; C. Cayley for Dalton (66).

BallinCollig: J. Gibbons; C. Moore, L. Jennings, S. Murphy; JP Murphy, N. Galvin, C. Cayley; S. Cayley, K. Coleman; E. Cook, L. Fahi, K. Brown; D. Murphy, C. Dorgen, P. Kelly.

Subs: Fahik (HT) de Dorgan; G O Donog for Brown (38); E Reilly for Coleman (51); M Cronin (60) CO Donovan.

Referee: D. Marnen.

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