Three minutes from the end of this absorbing tussle James Kielt arrowed a 20m free between the posts from wide right to level.
Kilrea were in sparkling form early on and led 1-03 to 0-01 with Paddy McNeill scoring the goal. Chris Bradley was the main Slaughtneil scorer in the first half with four points from play, Paul Bradley and Gerald Bradley also contributing as Kilrea took a 1-06 to 0-07 lead to the break after a three point scoring burst from the outstanding Lee Kennedy. Once again the enormous value of Paul Bradley to the Emmet’s was shown in the second half as he scored 0-06 from frees to keep the Emmet’s in contention.
A Kennedy goal put the Pearses 2-07 to 0-09 ahead but four frees from Bradley brought Slaughtneil back in the game, an injury to Joe Morgan taking the gloss off Kilrea’s draw.
Slaughtneil scorers: Paul Bradley 0-08 (8f), Chris Bradley 0-05, Chrissy McKaigue and Gerald Bradley 0-01
Kilrea scorers: Lee Kennedy 1-04 (1f), Paddy McNeill 1-01, James Kielt 0-02 frees, Conor McKenna and Charlie Kielt 0-01 each.
Daniel McKinless set the tone with a goal in the first minute, Magherafelt’s first goal coming from a Conor Kearns penalty. Rossas also lost Daniel Heavron with injury as the Shamrocks took a 1-10 to 1-04 lead to the break. Ballinderry piled on the pressure with a Conleith Gilligan penalty early in the second half, Gilligan and McKinless taking the game well beyond the Rossas with further goals.
Magherafelt did get a second goal from a Conor Kearns penalty but the reigning league champions maintained their push for a top four finish.
Ballinderry scorers were Conleith Gilligan 2-05, Daniel McKinless 2-02, Ryan Bell 0-04, Fintan Bell 0-02, James Conway, Darren Conway, Colin Devlin and Matt Quinn 0-01 each
Magherafelt scorers were Conor Kearns 2-02, Emmett McGuckin 0-02, Conor Monaghan 0-02, Shane Heavern and Thomas Niblock 0-01