Bannow-Ballymitty in control
Bannow-Ballymitty made light of the fact that they had to play two thirds of the game with 14 men as they warmed up for the knockout stages with a comfortable win in Group A of the Ashdown Park/Amber Springs Hotels Intermediate football championship in Taghmon on Friday.
Bannow-Ballymitty 3-8 St. Joseph's 0-4
Prolific duo Ben Brosnan and Niall Harney contributed 3-7 of the Bannow-Ballymitty tally, with fellow county man Kieran Butler the only other player to get on the scoresheet for the south county side.
When John Sinnott was dismissed for a clumsy challenge with 20 minutes on the clock and Bannow-Ballymitty 1-2 to 0-1 to the good, the Wexford town men were handed an opportunity to work their way back into the game, but it never came to pass as last year's beaten finalists simply sauntered to victory.
Brosnan introduced himself to the game in style when he raced through and planted the ball firmly beyond the reach of St. Joseph's goalkeeper Jamie McMahon in the seventh minute, and seconds later he saw a shot well saved by the netminder.
Wayne Carty popped over a free for St. Joseph's - who will play Kilmore in the relegation final - before points from Brosnan and Kieran Butler stretched the Bannow-Ballymitty advantage.
The New Ross District outfit were then reduced to 14 men but they responded well with two frees from Niall Harney and one from Brosnan.
Gary Byrne knocked over the final two points of the half, and when Decky Downes converted a free just after the interval to continue the mini revival it looked like St. Joseph's might make a game of it, but it proved to be their last score of the contest.
Bannow-Ballymitty dispelled any thoughts of a comeback in the 49th minute when Niall Murphy made a lung-bursting raid forward and picked out Graham Sinnott.
Sinnott played in Niall Harney, and the number 11 kept his cool to round the goalkeeper and slide the ball into an empty net.
They had the green flag waving again on 56 minutes, when Brosnan pounced on an effort at a point from substitute Adam Diskin that came back off the post, gathering the ball and clinically blasting it to the net.
Brosnan then completed the scoring with a peach of a point from the right to wrap up a morale-boosting win, while St. Joseph's must pick themselves up to try to stave off relegation when they face Kilmore.
Bannow-Ballymitty: Philly Murphy; John Staples, Niall Murphy, M.J. Doran; Conor Neville, Art Sweetman, Nicky Doyle; David Currid, John Sinnott; Darren Sinnott, Niall Harney (1-3, 0-3 frees), Ben Brosnan (2-4, 0-2 frees); Mark Sinnott, Kieran Butler (0-1), Graham Sinnott. Subs. - Adam Diskin for G. Sinnott, Mark Wallace for Harney, Art Murphy for Staples, Gary Morton for M. Sinnott.
St. Joseph's: Jamie McMahon; Eddie Byrne, Paddy King, Paddy Harnett; Darren Dempsey, Lee Wadding, Seamus King; Decky Downes (0-1 free), Kyle Dempsey; Wayne Carty (0-1 free), Derek Bergin, Ciarán Walsh; Dean Roche, Gary Byrne (0-2, 1 free), Robbie Mullins. Subs. - Frankie Hillis for G. Byrne (black card), Wally Lawlor for Roche.
Referee: Anthony Tobin (Geraldine O'Hanrahans).