Kanturk 4-23 Newcestown 0-26 (after extra time)
KANTURK came from eight points down in the second half to prevail after extra time in Saturday night’s Co-op SuperStores Cork SAHC semi-final against Newcestown at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday night.
Having trailed by 0-20 to 0-12 following a sparkling Newcestown start to the second period, Kanturk steadied and goals from Liam O’Keeffe and Ryan Walsh helped them to force extra time.
While they fell behind again to a point from Edmund Kenneally at the outset of the additional 20 minutes, O’Keeffe’s second goal put them into a lead that would not be lost, with Alan Walsh raising a fourth green flag as they eased clear in the second period.
They will face either Bride Rovers or Fr O’Neills in the final, grateful to have an extra week of recuperation.
The momentum swung sharply on more than one occasion in normal time. With Newcestown having impressively beaten Mallow in their quarter-final a week previously while Kanturk had received an automatic semi-final spot, the expectation might have been that the West Cork side would start with more momentum, but the opposite was the case.
Kanturk flew out of the traps, scoring five unanswered points in the first nine minutes, with the last of those exemplifying their wonderful interplay as Lorcán McLoughlin knitted together a move involving Aidan Walsh and Brian O’Sullivan before landing a final score.
However, Newcestown – who shot four early wides – did eventually manage to get going, with the impetus coming from midfield pairing Tadgh Twomey and Colm Dinneen as well as Eoghan Collins at centre-back.
By the water break, they were back to within two points, with David Buckley landing a fine score from a tight angle and then Trevor Horgan pointing following a turnover on a short Kanturk puckout.
With Ryan Walsh impressive at the back for Kanturk, they continued to do enough to stay in front, though Richard O’Sullivan was on form from frees for Newcestown. His third, from his own 65, left it 0-8 to 0-7 for Kanturk and, though Alan Sheehy replied, O’Sullivan landed two more, the latter after he pushed for goal, to tie matters at 0-9 each.
Then, from the puckout, Newcestown wing-back Colm O’Donovan won possession and his driving run led to Dinneen putting them ahead for the first time. A massive Ryan Walsh effort left it level at the interval, though.
While John Browne put Kanturk ahead on the restart, Newcestown dominated the rest of the third quarter, with David Buckley exceptional in the inside line, scoring four points from play in that period, two from Jack Meade sideline cuts.
Kanturk’s cause wasn’t helped by the loss of Paul Walsh to a red card on 42 and, while Brian O’Sullivan’s free ended 12 scoreless minutes before the water break, they still trailed by seven, 0-20 to 0-13, with Luke Meade having come to the fore for Newcestown.
However, a Liam O’Keeffe goal on 51, after Aidan Walsh had kept the ball alive, gave Kanturk hope, cutting the lead to four points. After an Ian Walsh score on 60, they were within three and parity was restored when Ryan Walsh strode forward and arrowed a shot home.
A monumental comeback looked to have been completed as Brian O’Sullivan put them in front again from a free, but Fionn Keane was on hand to level for Newcestown in the 64th minute. While they led again through Kenneally, extra time belonged to Kanturk.