Dilworth delivers the knockout blow for Knocknagree against Nemo Rangers

Dilworth delivers the knockout blow for Knocknagree against Nemo Rangers

Knocknagree's Matthew Dilworth scorer of the vital goal, after defeating Nemo in the Bon Secours PIFC quarter-final at Donoughmore. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Knocknagree 1-10 Nemo Rangers 0-12

MATTHEW Dilworth’s 56th-minute goal was the decisive score as Knocknagree squeezed past Nemo Rangers in the Bons Secours Hospital Cork Premier IFC quarter-final at Donoughmore on Saturday afternoon.

The Duhallow side, last year’s IFC champions, had only led after John Fintan Daly’s free opened the scoring in the second minute and trailed their city opponents by 0-7 to 0-3 at half-time and 0-10 to 0-7 by the time of the second-half water break in the 49th minute.

However, on the resumption, points from Fintan O’Connor (two) and Dilworth had them level while Nemo lost Andy McGowan to a black card and a superb move involving Eoghan McSweeney, Daniel O’Mahony and O’Connor ended with Dilworth rounding goalkeeper Luke Towler and slotting home. While Nemo responded points from Colm Kiely and Adrian Greaney to cut the gap to one, they couldn’t find an equaliser and Knocknagree advanced to a semi-final meeting with divisional rivals Newmarket.

Having shipped seven goals in their last outing, the defeat to Cill na Martra in the group stage, Knocknagree operated with a sweeper system from the start but, while they didn’t allow Nemo any goal opportunities in the opening half, points from Eric Dilloughrey and Greaney had the Capwell side 0-4 to 0-2 ahead by the first-half water break while both sides were wasteful – each would register eight wides by the interval.

Knocknagree's John Fintan Daly gets off his pass from Nemo Rangers' Adrian Greaney. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Knocknagree's John Fintan Daly gets off his pass from Nemo Rangers' Adrian Greaney. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Twice, Knocknagree’s Fintan O’Connor should have found the net. First, in the 19th minute, he did well to catch Eoghan McSweeney’s delivery after the Cork star had claimed a mark but then he couldn’t find the target and it was a similar situation just before the break after good work from Danny Cooper and Daly.

However, the four-point half-time deficit was cut to just one on the resumption as Fintan O’Connor, Denis O’Connor and McSweeney all had points, with defenders Michael Doyle and Daniel O’Mahony playing key roles in the build-up, but Nemo looked to have settled as they got three of the next four, with Greaney sending over two fine frees and wing-back James O’Donovan on target too.

By the time of the water break, sub Gearóid Looney’s point had been Knocknagree’s only score in the previous ten minutes but a more attacking approach, coupled with the numerical advantage after the black card, allowed them to seize the upper hand and progress to the last four.

Scorers for Knocknagree: F O’Connor 0-4 (0-2 f), M Dilworth 1-1, E McSweeney 0-2, G Looney, D O’Connor, JF Daly (f) 0-1 each.

Nemo Rangers: A Greaney 0-5 f, C Kiely 0-3 (0-2 f), J O’Donovan 0-2, E Dilloughrey, A O’Donovan 0-1 each.

KNOCKNAGREE: P Doyle; A Sheehan, M Doyle, G O’Connor; K Buckley, D O’Mahony, D Cooper; David O’Connor, D Moynihan; J Dennehy, E McSweeney, M Mahoney; Denis O’Connor, JF Daly, F O’Connor.

Subs: M Dilworth for Dennehy, G Looney for Sheehan (both half-time), P O’Connor for Moynihan (57). 

NEMO RANGERS: L Towler; C Shalloe, A O’Reilly, S O’Dwyer; L Horgan, C O’Shea, J O’Donovan; A O’Donovan, S Martin; E Dilloughrey, J Lyons, A Browne; A Greaney, J Coogan, C Kiely.

Subs: A McGowan for O’Reilly (48, injured) E Mangan for Browne (45), W Morgan for Dilloughrey (56).

Referee: J Murphy (Castletownroche).

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