IFC: Fitzsimons leaves it late for Killinkere

August 12, 2016

Killinkere's Emmet Fitzsimons

Killinkere 0-11

Drumlane 1-7

A 0-7 haul from Emmet Fitzsimons - including the winning score in injury-time - secured Killinkere's second win in five days in the intermediate championship tonight at the expense of Drumlane.

In what was a full-blooded championship encounter at Kingspan Breffni Park, the winners were made to come from behind after an off-colour first-half display which made them look a shadow of the side that defeated favourites Arva so convincingly last weekend.

The performance from Damien Donohoe's team would improve so considerably in the second-half that they'd outscore their opponents by eight scores to two, with Ryan Connolly's late goal for the latter forcing Fitzsimons to come up trumps for his team with a last gasp winner.

Drumlane were up and running within two minutes of this round two clash thanks to Gary Tubman's accurate free earned 40 metres from the posts by Glenn Fitzpatrick.

Fitzsimons (free) levelled at the far end in as many minutes ahead of Tubman's second placed ball sailing between Killinkere's uprights, after John O'Dowd was pulled back on a tear through the centre.

In the slippery conditions, Peter McCabe engineered the next scoring chance for Killinkere, jinking through and getting impeded for Fitzsimons' second free and they'd be let off the hook moments later as Tubman smashed a goal chance straight at 'keeper Eugene Clarke, who was equal to the former county minor's effort.

Instead Fitzsimons steered his side into their first lead in the 21st minute prior to the Milltown men finishing out the half strong via points from their lively outlet Tubman (2 frees) and captain Dane O'Dowd to lead 0-6 to 0-3 at the break.

It took nine minutes of the resumption for Donohoe's charges to wipe out their deficit, with Louis Fay-Cooper putting Fitzsimons through for his second from play and the marksman sent over successive frees to square it up.

Once Breen Smith was afforded the time and space to loop over another Barry McLoughlin's men looked to be dwindling, but the introduction of Connolly on 40 minutes helped to reap them quick dividends as he darted over a free to halt a 15-minute scoring drought for the green and whites.

The west Cavan outfit could have stolen back the lead in the ensuing minutes, but instead registered their seventh and eight wides which allowed their opponents to seize an opportunity.

After grabbing a loose ball 40 metres out, sub Anthony Brady restored the Killinkere advantage and midfielder Jason McMahon doubled it with two minutes of regulation left on the clock.

A superbly curled Fitzsimons free in injury-time looked to have the leaders over the line, but there was a twist left in the tale which saw Connolly punching in a goal at the far end from a lofted ball into the square - much to the delight of the Drumlane contingent.

There was time left for a winner to emerge however, with six minutes having been added on, and it was Killinkere that took it through their talisman Fitzsimons, who was threaded through and made no mistake from some 45 metres to settle the issue and leave a quarter-final berth within their grasp.

Killinkere: Eugene Clarke; Ollie Sharkey, Kevin McCabe, Gerard Brady; Breen Smith (0-1), Liam McCabe, Louis Fay-Cooper; Jason McMahon (0-1), Emmet Fitzsimons (0-7, 5f); Gary Denning, Paul Kerr, Darren Smith; Damien Sexton, Noel McGovern, Peter McCabe. Subs: Ciaran Sexton (0-1) for D Sexton (HT), Anthony Brady (0-1) for G Denning (46mins), Kieran Smith for P Kerr (46), Brian Clarke for D Smith (53), Dylan McAleer for O Sharkey (60).

Drumlane: Gareth Corrigan; Declan Lunney, John O'Dowd, Sean Smith; Glenn Fitzpatrick, Donal Monahan, Darragh Brady; Dane O'Dowd (0-1), Kian Monahan; Francis Lunney, Fergal Brady, Killian Tubman; Ciaran Crowe (0-1), Ciaran O'Reilly, Gary Tubman (0-4, 4f). Subs: Ryan Connolly (1-1, 1f) for K Tubman (40mins), Donal O'Reilly for Crowe (49), Crowe for C O'Reilly (52), Stephen McCann for G Tubman (58), Luke Longair for F Brady (60).

Ref: Martin Sexton (Cavan Gaels)

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