IT Sligo manager Padraig McGourty said he was proud of his side after they defeated GMIT in the preliminary round of the Sigerson Cup at Tuam Stadium.
The Sligo college had Philip Neilan sent-off for a second yellow card in the 28th minute, but James Shaughnessy scored 1-6 and they advance to face reigning champions UCD.
“I’ve to hand it to the lads, they were down to 14 men for about 40 minutes but dug in. We’re happy with where we are but we will have to improve significantly the next day,” said McGourty.
IT Sligo have won three Sigerson Cups, with their last crown in 2005, but they had a dismal FBD League.
GMIT have never won the title, and also had a poor start to 2017. They trailed 2-5 to 1-6 at half-time, despite playing with the strong breeze in the first-half.
Shaughnessy scored Sligo’s first goal in the 12th minute, but Joseph Donnellan hit back, only for Bryan Walsh to give IT Sligo the half-time lead.
Joseph Donnellan scored GMIT’s and his second goal ten minutes after half-time, but Jamie Brennan sealed it with 13 minutes remaining.
“Sligo were fitter, and that’s testament to the amount of work they put in,” said GMIT coach Val Daly.
Scorers – IT Sligo: J Shaughnessy 1-6 (0-4f), B Walsh 1-1, J Brennan 1-0, D Cafferkey 0-1 (0-1f), K McBrearty 0-1, R Smyth 0-1, R Connolly 0-1, R Gorman 0-1, C McGettigan 0-1. GMIT: J Donnellan 2-2 (0-1f), C Donohue 0-2 (0-1f), K Mannion 0-1, C Donnellan 0-1, J Reilly 0-1.
IT Sligo – D Cafferkey; R Gallagher, D McConnon, P Neilan; R Gorman, E McGrath, C McGettigan; R Connolly, K McBrearty; A McClean, R Smyth, J Brennan; B Walsh, J Shaughnessy, E B Gallagher.
Subs: Colm Reape for Walsh (half-time), J O’Reilly for Smyth (37, black card), D McGovern for McBrearty (50).
GMIT – C Nolan; K Mannion, C Reilly, A Commins; J Kinahan, J Downes, J Kelly; A Moran, B Raftery; C Donohue, E Brannigan, J Reilly; C Donnellan, M Shaughnessy, J Donnellan.
Subs: J Coen for Shaughnessy (21), A Molloy for Mannion (46), D Brennan for Coen (52).
Ref – Garry Owen McMahon (Dublin).