ILEN ROVERS maintained their Cork County Premier Senior Football status for next season after they cruised to a comfortable win against Bishopstown after this relegation play-off tie at Ahamilla.
Ilen Rovers spearheaded by attacking trio Dan MacEoin, Sean O’Donovan and Stephen Leonard, produced a brilliant attacking display that enabled them to overcome a gallant Bishopstown challenge.
This crushing defeat condemns Bishopstown to senior A football next year, though Town initially started brightly with Dara Costelloe opening their account.
The response from Ilen was emphatic however as they proceeded to score five successive points. Impressive team captain Sean O’Donovan with a brace, Dan MacEoin, Stephen Leonard and Peter O’Driscoll were all on target for their team.
This enabled Ilen to hold a four-point lead after 18 minutes.
Bishopstown quickly restored parity however as they struck 1-1 in the space of a minute. Brian Clifford netted following good play from Paul O’Flynn before Simon Collins pointed to level proceedings after 20 minutes.
Ilen finished the first half brightly as they proceeded to kick five consecutive points. Ace duo MacEoin and O’Donovan shared a brace apiece, while Dermot Hegarty was also on target. Ilen held a deserved five-point lead at half-time, 10 to 1-2.
The expected onslaught from Bishopstown arrived in the early stages of the second half. They reduced the deficit to three points following two well-taken points from Odhran Devlin. The presence of towering forward Denis Crowley at full-forward was also beginning to pose problems for Rovers.
Ilen, however, soon regained their authority on proceedings. Superbly led by O’Donovan, MacEoin and Leonard, they added a series of late scores to ensure a vital and comfortable win for Ilen.