Tullylish made it through to the championship quarter finals at the weekend despite losing their last group match to Kilclief in Castlewellan on Friday night.
The locals opened the scoring with a Chris McGovern point in the third minute but then conceded five unanswered points to trail be four after 15 minutes.
However, points from Peter Quinn, Shannon Drainey and John McAreavey reduced the deficit to the minimum with 10 minutes of the half remaining.
Wing back Aidan McCann doubled Kilclief’s lead with a point in the 23rd minute before Quinn goaled for Tullylish after being put through by a well placed handpass from Drainey.
McCann pointed again for Kilclief in injury time but there was still time for Kevin Murphy to reply for Tullylish to leave the half-time score: Tullylish 1-5 Kilclief 0-7.
The game became very scrappy on the restart as both teams struggled to create any clear openings and the first score didn’t arrive until the 13th minutes when a Shannon Drainey point put Tullylish into a two-point lead. Kilclief came back with a point from Owen Curran and two from Conor Sloan, to regain the lead with 10 minutes left.
They maintained the advantage as Sloan and McAreavey traded frees as the game moved towards full-time. A Davy Corbett point in the 30th minute looked to have salvaged a draw for Tullylish but Sloan had the last say when he pointed an injury-time free to win the game for Kilclief on a score-line of Tullylish 1-8 Kilclief 0-12.
However, Tullylish’s superior score-difference put them through to the quarter finals, while Kilclief can count themselves very unlucky to exit the competition having won two of their three group matches.
Tullylish team and scorers: A O’Hagan, Chris Magee, C McManus, R O’Dowd, C Scullion, F O’Dowd, K McKiverigan, K Murphy (0-1), P McKiverigan, S O’Hare, J McAreavey (0-2), P Quinn (1-1), C McGovern (0-1), D Corbett (0-1), S Drainey (0-2). Subs used: Conor Magee, K McCartan .