KILMACUD CROKES 1-16 BALLYBODEN ST ENDA’S 0-12
Kilmacud Crokes repeated their round-robin victory over last year’s champions, Ballyboden St Enda’s, in Saturday’s SHC semi-final at Parnell Park.
Crokes, champions themselves in 2012, will now face St Jude’s in the final after this defiant display.
The only goal of the tie came six minutes into the second half when Damien Kelly found Seán McGrath who dispatched clinically past Gary Maguire to give his side a 1-9 to 0-9 lead.
It temporarily quelled a Boden second half revival which began with points from Paul Ryan and a fine strike from Niall McMorrow after Crokes had led 0-9 to 0-5 at the interval.
However, despite the concession of the goal the Firhouse Road side lifted their game with Conal Keaney to the fore as they hit four unanswered points to trail by just the minimum, 0-11 to 1-9, by the three-quarter mark.
Ryan converted a free before a brace of excellent Keaney scores and when Ryan pointed another free, following a foul on Conor Robinson, Boden looked to have the momentum.
But Crokes had other plans.
Caolan Conway, who took over the freetaking duties from McGrath, swept over a 70-metre free to arrest his side’s slide and quickly followed up with a point from play followed a sideline which was disputed by Boden.
McGrath pushed Crokes four clear, 1-12 to 0-11, with a point from play inside the concluding ten minutes and by this stage the Stillorgan lads were in control with the likes of Cian McGabhann and Ryan O’Dwyer leading by example.
Crokes finished the contest off in style with four points in-a-row in the final five minutes with McGrath, Conway (free), the influential Kelly and Kelly again following good grafting by sub Jude Sweeney making it a seven-point victory in the end.
In the opening half Boden began well with points from Ryan (free) and Simon Lambert but as the half wore on Crokes became their more dominant side with their defence more than a match for the Boden attack.
Up front Crokes also had an ace in Oisín O’Rorke who angled over two fine points the first of which was a decent goal chance, as they fully merited their 0-9 to 0-5 interval advantage.
SCORERS – Kilmacud Crokes: C Conway 0-6 (0-2f), S McGrath 1-2, D Kelly 0-3, O O’Rorke 0-2, R O’Dwyer, D Mulligan, N Corcoran 0-1 each. Ballyboden St Enda’s: P Ryan 0-5 (0-4f, 0-1 ‘65’), C O’Neill, C Keaney 0-2 each, S Lambert, N McMorrow, C McCormack 0-1 each.
KILMACUD CROKES: M Collins; N Corcoran, R O’Loughlin, J Clinton; C Mac Gabhann, J Doughan, B O’Carroll; D Mulligan, D Kelly; R O’Carroll, S McGrath, C Conway; O O’Rorke, R O’Dwyer, B O’Rorke. Subs: B Mulligan for B O’Carroll (41), J Sweeney for B O’Rorke (46), J Burke for O O’Rorke (52), B Ó Leidhin for McGrath (59).
BALLYBODEN ST ENDA’S: G Maguire; J Madden, S Hiney, C Robinson; S Durlin, D Curran, S O’Connor; F McGarry, N McMorrow; C Keaney, D Curtin, D O’Connor; P Ryan, S Lambert, C O’Neill. Subs: M Weldon for McGarry (28), T Sweeney for Curtin (ht), C McCormack for O’Connor (38), G Corrigan for O’Neill (46), J Roche for Lambert (59).
REF: P Behan (Trinity Gaels).