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Knockmore into first Connacht final for 25 years, Leinster SFC semi-finals set

Shelmaliers, Naas and Portarlington all booked their place in the Leinster SFC semis, while in Ulster, Clann Éireann beat Kickhams Creggan after extra time.

Tourlestrane's Cian Surlis with Pearse Ruttledge and Adam Naughton of Knockmore.
Tourlestrane's Cian Surlis with Pearse Ruttledge and Adam Naughton of Knockmore.
Image: Evan Logan/INPHO

Connacht SFC semi-final

  • Knockmore (Mayo) 0-10 Tourlestrane (Sligo) 0-8

Leinster SFC quarter-finals

  • Shelmaliers (Wexford) 2-6 Naomh Mairtín (Louth) 1-7
  • Naas (Kildare) 4-11 Blessington (Wicklow) 1-7
  • Portarlington (Laois) 1-14 St Loman’s 1-12

Ulster SFC quarter-final

  • Clann Éireann (Armagh) 2-14 Kickhams Creggan (Antrim) 0-17 (after extra time)

MAYO CHAMPIONS KNOCKMORE booked their return to the Connacht Club SFC final for the first time in 25 years with a hard-fought victory over Tourlestrane of Sligo.

It who was Tourlestrane who led at the break, 0-5 to 0-3, and they stretched further in front with the opening score of the second half.

But Knockmore rallied to peg them back and draw level at 0-7 apiece with five minutes to play before kicking three of the last four points to seal their comeback win.

They advance to the Connacht final after Christmas against the winners of next Saturday’s semi-final between Galway’s Mountbellew-Moylough and Roscommon’s Padraig Pearses.

In the Leinster Club SFC, Shelmaliers of Wexford, Kildare champions Naas, and Portarlington of Laois all secured their passage to the semi-finals with wins on Sunday.

Naas were far too strong for neighbours Blessington from Wicklow as they ran out 4-11 to 1-7 victors.

Luke Griffin’s goal set Naas on their way Kevin Quinn did hit the net for Blessington to leave them 1-7 to 1-2 adrift at the interval.

Naas powered clear in the second half with Brian Kane, Griffin and Darragh Kirwan all raising green flags.

barry-murphy-celebrates-after-the-game-with-eamonn-callaghan Naas' Barry Murphy celebrates after the game with Eamonn Callaghan. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

They will face Shelmaliers in the semis after the Wexford men defeated Louth’s Naomh Máirtín by 2-6 to 1-7.

An early Conor Whelan goal gave Naomh Máirtín a boost at Haggardstown.

But an Eoghan Nolan goal helped Shelmaliers draw level at 1-3 apiece by half-time and Ross Banville’s early second-half goal enabled the Wexford champions progress.

Meanwhile, Portarlington held off a St Loman’s comeback to win by two points and set a date against Dublin champions Kilmacud Crokes.

The Laois champions raced in an early 1-6 to 0-1 lead inside the opening quarter only to see Loman’s claw their way back to within three points at the break, 1-7 to 0-7.

And Loman’s carried that momentum through the opening exchanges of the second half to edge into a one-point lead by the 36th minute.

The ding-dong battle continued into the last 10 minutes, the sides level at 1-12 apiece before Portarlington kicked the final two scores to seal their victory.

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In the Ulster Club SFC, Clann Éireann of Armagh kicked a free at the death to force extra time before going on to beat Kickhams Creggan by three points.

The game pitted together two clubs who had ended long waits for glory in their respective counties, Clann Éireann lifting the Armagh crown for the first time in 58 years and Kickhams Creggan triumphing in Antrim after a 67-year barren spell.

Creggan led by six points at the break after a dominant first half, 0-8 to 0-2, but Clann Éireann produced a stunning third quarter where they scored 1-4 without reply.

Ruairi McDonald’s goal on 43 minutes left the sides level at the water break, 0-9 to 1-6, and although Creggan had their noses back in front in a nip-and-tuck finale, Tiernan Kelly’s late free earned Clann Éireann a draw, 0-12 to 1-9.

Daniel Magee’s goal in the first half of extra time proved to be decisive as the Armagh side ran out 2-14 to 0-17 winners.

They’ll play Fermanagh’s Derrygonnelly Harps, extra-time winners over Tyrone’s Dromore yesterday, in the semi-final on the weekend 0f 18-19 December.

BTL 5

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