Crossmaglen and Crokes claim titles
Club SFC round-up:Ulster kingpins Crossmaglen claimed their sixth Ulster club title in the space of seven years, beating Kilcoo of Down 3-10 to 1-9, but the Armagh champions were chased hard in a second half in which they managed just a handful of scores at the Athletic Grounds.
Early goals from Oisin McConville and Aaron Kernan helped Crossmaglen build a commanding 2-6 to 0-3 lead at the interval and when Kernan notched the first point of the second half it looked like another procession. But Kilcoo, with Darragh O’Hanlon leading the charge, chipped away at that lead and when Anthony Devlin fired home the gap was down to just four points.
But time was against the Down champions, and despite losing Michael McNamee to a straight red for striking late on, Crossmaglen held pushed on in the closing stages to claim a record 10th provincial title.
Down in Pairc Ui Chaoimh, Dr Crokes of Tralee claimed the Munster title as Castlehaven were well beaten, 0-19 to 0-12. The Cork side’s cause wasn’t helped by the Sean Dineen’s dismissal early in the second half, the influential midfielder earning a second yellow for an agricultural challenge on Kerry star Colm Cooper.
But, in truth, Dr Crokes were always in charge with Brian Looney the star performer on the day as he finished with a personal tally of 0-7. “We nearly threw away an eight point lead up in Clare,” Looney told TG4 afterwards. “So we wanted to play for the full 60 minutes, to play for the full game. There were still a few mistakes out there but the work rate continued ‘til the end.
“Castlehaven gave everything they had, they got back to within a couple of points, but we pushed on again and extended the lead.”