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St Mary's reach first Sigerson Cup final in 24 years with narrow win over 13-man UCC

A one point win for the team trained by Paddy Tally today.

St Mary's Kevin McKernan and UCC's Adrian Spillane.
St Mary's Kevin McKernan and UCC's Adrian Spillane.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

St Mary’s 2-7
UCC 2-6

Fintan O’Toole reports from Connacht GAA Centre of Excellence

ST MARY’S CLINCHED a place in a Sigerson Cup final for the first time in 24 years, when they came from behind to see off UCC in this afternoon’s semi-final clash.

Ciaran Corrigan’s 51st minute goal was the crucial score when he palmed the ball to the net after St Mary’s had prised apart the UCC defence with Tyrone senior Cathal McShane making an incisive run.

That was St Mary’s first score of the second half but it was invaluable and substitute Corey Quinn clipped over a point to stretch their advantage to two points in the closing stages.

UCC then narrowed the deficit in injury-time when Brian O’Driscoll fired over a long-range free. But despite a late barrage of attacks, UCC could not manage to send the game to extra-time.

The last play of the game saw O’Driscoll size up a difficult free from distance yet after the ball dropped short, UCC recycled possession only for Stephen Sherlock’s snap shot under pressure to drop short and St Mary’s goalkeeper Mark Reid gathered as the final whistle sounded soon after.

UCC finished the game with 13 men after Adrian Spillane and Alan O’Donovan were both dismissed. Spillane was shown a black card after earlier receiving a yellow while O’Donovan was sent-off for an off the ball incident.

Defeat was agonising for UCC in a game where they had enjoyed a dream start. Playing into a fierce breeze, their ploy of captain Ian Maguire drifting in to the full-forward position, paid off in stunning fashion.

Firstly Maguire got on the end of a Brian O’Driscoll free to fist the ball to the net for the opening score of the game. Then seconds later, he intercepted a short kickout and transferred the ball to Cathal Bambury who planted the ball to the net.

St Mary’s rallied well before half-time to go in front 1-6 to 2-2 with Oisin O’Neill and Kieran McGeary kicking some wonderful points while Matthew Fitzpatrick found the net in the 17th minute.

Scorers for St Mary’s: Matthew Fitzpatrick 1-1, Ciaran Corrigan 1-0, Oisin O’Neill 0-3 (0-2f), Kieran McGeary 0-2 (0-2f), Corey Quinn 0-1.

Scorers for UCC: Cathal Bambury 1-1, Brian O’Driscoll 0-3 (0-1f), Ian Maguire 1-0, Killian Spillane 0-2 (0-2f).

St Mary’s

1. Mark Reid (Bryansford, Down)

19. Ruairi Mooney (Eoghan Rua Coleraine, Derry)
3. Aaron McKay (Dromintee, Armagh)
4. Kyle Mallon (Killeavy, Armagh)

5. Colm Byrne (Eglish, Tyrone)
7. Conor Meyler (Omagh, Tyrone)
26. Kieran McGeary (Pomeroy Plunkett’s)

18. Brian Óg McGilligan (Banagher, Derry)
9. Oisin O’Neill (Crossmaglen Rangers, Armagh)

10. Ciaran Corrigan (Maguiresbridge, Fermanagh)
17. Conall McCann (Killyclogher, Tyrone)
12. Stephen McConville (Clonduff, Down)

13. Kevin McKernan (Burren, Down)
15. Cathal McShane (Eoghan Roe O’Neill’s, Tyrone)
14. Matthew Fitzpatrick (Naomh Eoin, Antrim)

Subs

24. Corey Quinn (Mayobridge, Down) for McCann (black card) (26)
21. Ciaran Mac Iomhar (Annaghmore, Armagh) for McGeary (black card) (48)
23. Darragh Kavanagh (Augher, Tyrone) for McGilligan (49)
27. Aaron Nugent (Cullyhanna, Armagh) for McConville

UCC

1. Micheal Martin (Nemo Rangers, Cork)

29. Caoimhin O Beaglaoich (An Ghaeltacht, Kerry)
18. Fionan Clifford (Waterville, Kerry)
2. Jason Foley (Ballydonoghue, Kerry)

5. Stephen Cronin (Nemo Rangers, Cork)
6. Kevin Crowley (Millstreet, Cork)
27. Tom O’Sullivan (Dingle, Kerry)

22. Ian Maguire (St Finbarr’s Cork)
9. Ronan O’Toole (Éire Óg, Cork)

7. Brian O’Driscoll (Tadgh MacCarthaigh, Cork)
11. Adrian Spillane (Templenoe, Kerry)
8. Jack Kennedy (Clonmel Commercials, Tipperary)

10. Ronan Buckley (Listry, Kerry)
14. Killian Spillane (Templenoe, Kerry)
15. Cathal Bambury (Dingle, Kerry)

Subs

17. Kevin Flahive (Douglas, Cork) for O Beaglaoich (half-time)
24. Alan O’Donovan (Nemo Rangers, Cork) for O’Toole (40)
33. Stephen Sherlock (St Finbarr’s, Cork) for Buckley (44)

Referee: James Molloy (Galway)

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