At a pretty desolate Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney, a second-half goal from substitute Jason Mortimer in the 40th minute, four minutes after his introduction, proved vital.
Killorglin will be disappointed not to have advanced as they had plenty of chances but nine wides proved costly in the end for the Mid Kerry School.
They had led by 1-6 to 1-3 at half-time with both goals coming inside the opening five minutes. Gearoid Fitzgerald rattled the back of the net for Tralee in their first attack in the third minute but his opposite number 14 Roan Moriarty pounced at the other end two minutes later after the Green defence failed to deal with a dropping free from their opponents.
Mike Breen and Caoilm Teahan (All-Ireland Minor winners with Kerry) impressed for Killorglin but it was another All-Ireland Minor winner in Kieran O’Dwyer who steered the Green towards their win.
Killorglin led by 1-9 to 1-5 when Mortimer scored his goal pretty much from nothing in reigniting the Green’s challenge as two points from O’Dwyer had them back in front on the scoreboard.
The Green needed two big moments at the other end to go their way however in securing victory as Brandon Patterson cleared off the line to stop Diarmuid O’Mahony scoring a second Killorglin goal while Tralee goalkeeper Shane Foley also made a point-blank save from Killorglin’s Darragh O’Connor with four minutes left.
They now face Colaiste Chriost Ri in the semi-finals.
M Kelliher (0-5, 3f), G Fitzgerald and J Mortimer (1-0 each), K O’Dwyer (0-2), E Greaney, T O’Connor and J O’Connor (0-1 each).
P Daly (0-4, 4f), R Moriarty (1-0), M Breen (0-2), C Teahan, P Carey, C Kennedy and D Cleary (f) (0-1 each)
S Foley, B Patterson, T Lynch, J Myers, J Walsh, K Dwyer, A Clifford, J O’Connor, T O’Connor, S Donnellan, T Hoare, D Fitzmaurice, E Greaney, G Fitzgerald, M Kelliher Subs: J Mortimer for Fitzmaurice (36), M Hoare for Greaney (52) and M Scanlon for Clifford (58).
C O’Sullivan, D O’Mahony, C Murphy, C Sugrue, D Mangan, P Carey, I McGuillicuddy, M Breen, C Teahan, D Casey, C Kennedy, D Cleary, P Daly (Laune Rangers), R Moriarty, D O’Connor. Subs: K Fitzpatrick for Mangan (47), E O’Sullivan for Daly (58) and P Daly (Firies) for Casey (60).
Referee: K Walsh (Clare)