Lucan Sarsfields 1-20 Kilmacud Crokes 1-10
A strong second-half performance helped Lucan Sarsfields cruise to an emphatic victory over a disappointing Kilmacud Crokes in their Evening Herald SHC ‘A’ quarter-final at O’Toole Park on Saturday afternoon.
On this display, Sarsfields will be more than a match for any of the remaining semi-finalists, with Pádraig O’Driscoll excelling once again from centre-back and the introduction of substitute Kevin O’Reilly brought added finesse and scoring threat to their talented forward line.
Kilmacud can have no complaints over their margin of defeat as they struggled to match their opponent’s intensity over the hour with Kevin O’Loughlin’s performance being one of the few bright points on an otherwise forgettable afternoon for last year’s beaten finalists.
Lucan gave early notice of their intentions when Tommy Somers pulled clinically to the net on five minutes past a helpless Richie Sweetman from Robert Lambert’s crossfield ball and within a minute the lively Aidan Roche was denied by a superb Sweetman save as alarming gaps appeared in the Crokes rearguard.
Points from Fergal Armstrong and O’Loughlin kept Kilmacud in the hunt but Crokes were struggling to create clearcut chances and, at the other end, Somers kept Lucan’s tally ticking over with his accurate free-taking to help his side to a two-point (1-6 to 0-7) interval lead.
Although O’Loughlin brought Crokes to within a point of Lucan in the 32nd minute, four unanswered points in as many minutes from Peter Kelly, Somers, O’Reilly and Paddy Brennan emphasised the attacking options and cutting-edge present in the Lucan panel.
Two more O’Loughlin frees left a goal between the sides with a quarter of the match remaining, but on this occasion, Sarsfields reeled off five points in succession through Somers (2) and O’Reilly (3) to build an unassailable eight-point lead entering the final five minutes.
Barry O’Rorke’s goal from Ronan Walsh’s driving run on 56 minutes was of mere nuisance value to Lucan and five more unanswered points from Somers (2), O’Reilly, Brennan and Roche saw them stroll home with 10 points to spare at the final whistle.
Scorers — Lucan: T Somers 1-9 (0-8f), K O’Reilly 0-5 (2f, ’65’), A Roche, P Brennan 0-2, A Duff, P Kelly 0-1 each. Kilmacud: K O’Loughlin 0-8 (7f), B O’Rorke 1-0, F Armstrong, H Gannon 0-1.
Lucan Sarsfields: D Cunningham, C Dooley, P Callaghan, J Byrne, M May, P O’Driscoll, T Clandillon, J McCaffrey, G Coleman, R Lambert, A Duff, T Somers, A Roche, P Brennan, P Kelly. Subs: K O’Reilly for Coleman (32 mins), D Quinn for Lambert (55 mins), B McGarry for Clandillon (56 mins).
Kilmacud Crokes: R Sweetman, N Corcoran, N Lillis, G McMorrow, A Cleary, A De Paor, D Byrne, A Grogan, S Gillen, J Burke, H Gannon, Ross O’Carroll, R Walsh, F Armstrong, K O’Loughlin. Subs: B O’Rorke for Burke (32-36 mins Blood sub), Rory O’Carroll for Gillen (39 mins), O’Rorke for Burke (46 mins).
Referee: Fergus McGreevey (St Oliver Plunkett’s/Eoghan Ruadh)
– Rónán Mac Lochlainn