Brady hat trick keep title with Crokes for seven years straight
East Kerry SFC Final Dr Crokes 3-9 Rathmore 2-10 A three goal salvo from Chris Brady and a selfless performance by Colm Cooper was needed by Dr Crokes to see off a mighty effort from Rathmore as Dr Crokes retained their title and equalled their own club record of winning seven consecutive East Kerry titles, as Colm Cooper and Eoin Brosnan joined Jackie Looney and Con Clifford in their record haul of 10 medals.
Despite it being five weeks since their own semi-final victory over Gneeveguilla, Rathmore overcame a shaky first quarter to really give the Crokes a run for their record. It looked like Crokes might run riot with only 12 minutes gone as they led by 1-3 to 0-1, the goal coming after David O'Leary, Ambrose O'Donovan and Johnny Buckley combined to put Chris Brady through for the first of his three goals.
Rathmore were back in the game in the 16th minute as John Buckley took advantage of an uncharacteristic fumble by David Moloney to poke the ball into the net and reduce the deficit to one. Crokes looked set to regain the momentum six minutes later as Cooper brilliantly put Brady through for his second goal but Rathmore finished the half with four unanswered points to make it only a one point lead for the Crokes at half-time, 2-5 to 1-7.
John Buckley's long range free levelled the game but Crokes then hit a crucial 1-2 without reply. Brian Looney put Brady through for his hat-trick in the 35th minute. They would not score for a total of 20 minutes though as Rathmore found a gear to come back at them. Aidan O'Mahony and a third Buckley free had the deficit back to a score but Mark Reen missed a glorious goal chance in the 43rd minute that really could have give his side the initiative to go on and end the Crokes' dominance in East Kerry. They would be level in the 49th minute however, when Reen was adjudged to have been fouled inside the area by Michael Moloney and Eoin Lawlor's low penalty strike had the game level at 3-7 to 2-10.
Rathmore would not score again however as Crokes reverted to type in brilliantly keeping hold of the ball. It drew a scoreable free for Cooper in the 57th minute and in the second minute of stoppage time, Kieran O'Leary made an interception that led to a point for his brother David.