Killeeshil overcome Crosserlough in Paul McGirr Tournament epic encounter
Paul McGirr Tournament quarter-final: Killeeshil (Tyrone)
6-18 Crosserlough (Cavan) 6-14 (after extra-time)
KILLEESHIL were the first team to book their place in the semi-finals of the Paul McGirr tournament, but only after an epic battle with Crosserlough.
Killeeshil looked to be on their way to a straightforward win when they opened up a 2-5 to 0-2 lead 10 minutes in. Cormac Donaghy scored one goal and set up another for Jason Doyle.
However, Crosserlough soon got up to the pace of the game and although Tomas Hoy bagged a third Killeeshil goal in the 15th minute - part of his amazing tally of 2-10 - majors from Nathan Galligan and Emmett Boylan helped the Cavan side reach the break trailing by just 3-8 to 2-6.
Seven minutes into the second-half, the gap was down to a single point when Peter Smith converted a penalty. Killeeshil responded in the best possible manner when Donaghy hit the net but Crosserlough continued to create scores and a 53rd minute point from Emmett Boylan left three in it.
Doyle plundered another point for Killeeshil but the game was turned on its head as the wind and rain arrived, causing mayhem in the St Mary’s rearguard. A high ball into the square bounced off captain Matthew McCusker and ended in the net to narrow the gap to the minimum.
Once more, Killeeshil responded positively and fine points from Niall Loughran and Tomas Hoy put three between the sides again. With time almost up, Crosserlough sent the game to extra-time thanks to another Peter Smith goal which left the score at Killeeshil 4-14 Crosserlough 5-11 at full-time.
Scores were harder to come by in extra-time but Patrick Lynch pointed to put the Cavan lads in front before another Donaghy major swung the game in favour of the Tyrone champions. A brace of points from Crosserlough once again tied the game as the half-time whistle sounded.
Just when it seemed that fatigue could determine the outcome, a couple of moments of class from Hoy finally swung the game in favour of Killeeshil and sealed their last-four spot.