Brick cements Kerry progress
Kerry 1-20 IT Tralee 1-15
SHANE BRICK saved Kerry's blushes in Killarney, firing 0-12 in his first county game since 2010.
With his side under pressure in this preliminary-round match, Brick announced his return in clinical style.
Darragh O'Connell added 1-4, including a fortuitous first-half goal-- his point attempt from 40 yards flew into the net, helping the Christy Ring Cup holders into an early 1-4 to 0-1 lead.
IT Tralee battled back to lead 1-10 to 1-9 at half-time, with Eamonn Brosnan scoring 1-5.
With 10 minutes left, extra-time looked a real possibility, with the teams on 1-14 apiece.
But Brick and O'Connell had other ideas as Kerry finished strongly to set up an intriguing quarter-final against Cork next weekend.
That will mark Jimmy Barry-Murphy's first competitive match back in charge of Cork, with his old team-mate John Meyler in charge of Kerry.
Scorers -- Kerry: S Brick 0-12 (8f, 1 '65'), D O'Connell 1-4 (2f), J Egan 0-2, M Boyle, S Nolan 0-1 each. IT Tralee: E Brosnan 1-5 (4f), M Deegan 0-3 (2f), M Lynch 0-2, T Morley, B O'Grady, F Kennedy, G O'Doherty, D O'Halloran 0-1 each.
Kerry -- B Rochford; P Costello, R Horgan, J Godley; L Boyle, T Murnane, J Griffin; D Dineen, D O'Connell; S Brick, M Boyle, J Egan; PJ Connolly, A Boyle, J Flaherty. Subs: S Nolan for PJ Connolly (h-t), C Harris for J Flaherty (h-t).
IT Tralee -- D Delaney; T Morley, O Gately, M Lynch; B Murphy, M Deegan, M Cleary; M Kiely, J Leahy; C Harty, B O'Grady, F Kennedy; E Brosnan, P O'Connor, G O'Doherty. Subs: P Carey for T Morley (42), D O'Halloran for C Harty (58), J Walsh for P O'Connor (68).
Ref -- M O'Connor (Limerick).