Sunday 24 September 2017

McGrath downs Clonlara

Conor McGrath fired over nine points as holders Cratloe overcame neighbours Clonlara at the second time of asking to reach next weekend's final.

In a repeat of last year's decider, Cratloe pulled away in the second period to secure a showdown against Crusheen.

Clonlara looked sharper early on and led by 1-3 to 0-1 after 11 minutes, with Darach Honan grabbing the game's first goal.

On 27 minutes, they led by 1-6 to 0-3 and were full value for their lead.

But a goal by quick-thinking Cathal McInerney got Cratloe right back in it and by the half-time whistle they trailed by only two points, 1-7 to 1-5.

After the restart, though, McInerney bagged another goal to put his side 2-6 to 1-7 in front and they stayed ahead, with corner-forward McGrath a handful for the Clon' defence throughout.

Clonlara tried to strike back late on and recorded some fine scores, but a resolute Cratloe held out to seal victory.

Scorers -- Cratloe: C McGrath 0-9 (0-4f), C McInerney 2-0, C Ryan 0-2, L Markham, S Collins, E Boyce 0-1 each. Clonlara: D Honan 1-2 (0-1f), C O'Donovan, J Conlan 0-3 each, C O'Connell, D O'Donovan, P Nihill (0-1 '65'), W Slattery, N O'Connell (0-1f) 0-1 each.

Cratloe -- S Hawes; P Gleeson, B Duggan, D Ryan; J O'Gorman, M Hawes, L Markham; E Boyce, S Chaplin; S Collins, C Ryan, D Browne; C McGrath, C McInerney, P Collins. Subs: B Gleeson for P Collins (59), S Hynan for McInerney (60).

Clonlara -- G O'Connell; P Collins, J Moloney, S Nihill; D O'Donovan, P Nihill, N O'Connell; T Lynch, C O'Donovan; C Galvin, J Conlan, P O'Hare; D Honan, T O'Donovan, C O'Connell. Subs: W Slattery for O'Hara (ht), D Madden for T O'Donovan (46), C Fennessy for C O'Connell (57).

Ref -- G Hoey (Killenena)

Irish Independent

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