On an afternoon when two of their key forwards, Brian Friel and Dean Fitzgerald, were black carded, Rathmore led by a point, eight minutes from time. Half-time sub Mark Ryan had kicked two inspirational scores, while Jamie Brosnan also put over a brace as the Kerry school upped their game after half-time.
St Flannan’s showed resolve when most needed. They were rewarded three minutes from the end of normal time when Maurice Nugent put away a penalty won by Ian Molloy to open a 1-9 to 1-6 lead. Rathmore refused to wilt and two injury-time John O’Leary scores left just a point between the sides, but time ran out on the Kerry side.
The winners led 0-3 to 0-1 after 15 minutes with Gavin Cooney impressing in attack. At the other end, Dean Fitzgerald looked very dangerous and he found the net in the 21st minute following a superb Brian Friel run and an astute pass from Shane O’Sullivan. However St Flannan’s led 0-6 to 1-2 at half-time thanks to an injury time Cooney free.
With Mark Ryan dominating at midfield, the momentum seemed to be with Rathmore in the third quarter.
St Flannan’s didn’t panic and although they trailed entering the final few minutes, Conor Lynch pointed a crucial free to level it. This was followed by Nugent’s penalty, which he banged straight down the middle of Jerry Cronin’s goal. St Flannan’s now have a Corn Uí Mhuirí semi-final, against St Brendan’s, Killarney to prepare for and while Rathmore will be disappointed, they can reflect on the fact that they reached the last eight in what was their first season playing at this level.
D Dugggan (0-4f), G Cooney (0-3, 0-2f), M Nugent (1-0 pen), T Hannon, C Lynch (f) (0-1 each).
D Fitzgerald (1-1), J Brosnan, M Ryan, J O’Leary (f) (0-2 each), S O’Sullivan (0-1).
E Campbell (Doora-Barefield); P Collins (Doora-Barefield), D Crimmins (Clarecastle), M Crowe (Clondegad); R Hayes (Crusheen), E O’Connor (Éire Óg), T Hannon (Doora-Barefield); M Nugent (Doora-Barefield), R Crimmins (Clarecastle); S Kennedy (Kilmaley), C Mullins (Crusheen), C Donnelly (Clarecastle); G Cooney (Éire Óg), R Jennings (Clondegad), D Duggan (Doora-Barefield).
C Lynch (Clondegad) for R Jennings (27), S Collins (Banner) for S Kennedy (49-inj), I Molloy (Banner) for C Mullins (53), G Cahill for D Duggan (55), M Gavin for R Crimmins (56).
J Cronin (Gneeveguilla); T Fleming ((Gneeveguilla), DJ Murphy (Gneeveguilla), D O’Callaghan (Rathmore); P Warren (Gneeveguilla), C O’Connor (Gneeveguilla), D Cronin (Rathmore); C O’Connor (Gneeveguilla), JJ Herlihy (Gneeveguilla); D Moynihan (Rathmore), B Friel (Rathmore), J Brosnan (Gneeveguilla); D Fitzgerald (Rathmore), I Roche (Glenflesk), S O’Sullivan (Gneeveguilla).
J O’Leary (Gneeveguilla) for B Friel (BC–30), M Ryan (Rathmore) for T Fleming (half-time), S Twomey (Knockagree) for D Fitzgerald (BC-53).
Richie Moloney (Limerick).