Tyrone storm back to topple the Kerry lads

Electric Ireland GAA Football All Ireland Minor Championship Quarter-Final, Croke Park, Dublin 4/8/2013'Kerry vs Tyrone'Tyrone's Cillian McCann and Jack Savage of Kerry'Mandatory Credit �INPHO/James Crombie
Electric Ireland GAA Football All Ireland Minor Championship Quarter-Final, Croke Park, Dublin 4/8/2013'Kerry vs Tyrone'Tyrone's Cillian McCann and Jack Savage of Kerry'Mandatory Credit �INPHO/James Crombie

Tyrone progressed to the All-Ireland minor semi-final, but only thanks to a nerve-tingling extra-time win over shell-shocked Kerry in Croke Park.

Tyrone were reduced to 13 men and trailing by a point deep in injury time in normal time but corner forward Stephen McGrath stepped up with an excellent effort to send the game to a extra time.

Tyrone, despite missing a penalty in the second period of extra time managed to grind out a two point, with a brace of Conor McKenna points in the last six minutes of the extra period enough to see the young Red Hands through to a two point victory.

Manager Mickey Donnelly will now have to plan without the assistance of captain Ruairi McGlone who saw his second red card in as many matches.

Tyrone got the opening score of the contest with Trillick’s Lee Brennan taking advantage of a mix up in the Kerry rearguard to kick a point from 30 metres straight in front of the posts within the first minutes.

The Kingdom youngsters responded immediately with a Shane O’Connor run at the Tyrone full back line allowing Jack Savage to fire low past the despairing dives of four Tyrone defenders from the edge of the small square.

Tyrone had a great goal chance as Conor McKenna picked out Ruairi McGlone alone behind the Kerry defence but he fired his shot straight at Shane Ryan in the Kerry goal and then Brennan saw his rebound effort turned round the right upright.

Conor McKenna scored the resulting 45 to bring Tyrone back into the contest.

Brennan and Conor Keane exchanged points before Kerry spurned another goal chance with a poor attempt at a lift.

Derrylaughan man Stephen McGrath then fired over two quick points for Tyrone as things began to settle around the middle of the field.

Jack Savage was causing proving a thorn in Tyrone’s side the Kerins O’Rahillys man pointing from play almost immediately in response.

Tyrone responded once more this time with two points of their own through Daire Gallagher and Lee Brennan.

Two scores from Savage brought the sides level again before McGrath and Brennan combined for the Trillick attacker to point. Indeed he doubled the dose a minute later to leave Tyrone a point to the good at the break.

Tyrone were to endure a torrid second period, their shooting all too often letting them down in attack, although they held their shape defensively fairly well.

Kerry opened the second half scoring with corner forward Conor Keane slotting neatly between the uprights.

They levelled the scores with five minutes of the second half gone Jack Savage adding another free for the Kerry men.

Tyrone in the opening 10 minutes of the half failed to fire as they dropped four shots short, kicked a wide and hit the post.

Kerry for their part took advantage taking the lead with 15 minutes remaining with a Killian Spillane effort.

Christopher Morris finally got Tyrone’s first point of the half with a point from in front of the posts.

But the talented Galbally man found himself away for an early shower as he received a second yellow card shortly afterwards.

Two quick Kerry frees saw the Kingdom into a two point lead, a lead reduced with a couple of minutes remaining by Brennan.

The game became very heated with a number of Tyrone men threading a very fine line and captain Ruairi McGlone eventually crossed it seeing red as full time neared.

At this juncture, all looked lost for Tyrone in the final minute of injury time when corner forward McGrath showed admirable composure to fire over the bar and rescue the game for Tyrone.

With Tyrone able to replace the dismissed men in injury time they dug deep.

Galbally midfielder Ronan Nugent led the charge and set the tone for extra time with a fine point from the right wing.

Substitute Philip Donnelly made his presence felt with a point of his own a minute later with a neatly-taken effort when in space.

McGrath scored his fourth of the game with a point midway through the first period to give Tyrone a three point advantage.

Kerry weren’t going to lie down and responded again with Savage predictably getting the first and substitute Kieran Murphy punching over his sides second point.

A Kingdom point early in the second period levelled the scores before Tyrone won a penalty after Conor McKenna was pulled down.

Lee Brennan’s effort was well saved by Shane Ryan only for Conor McKenna to point the resulting 45.

With Kerry pushing forward Tyrone and McKenna struck again the Eglish forward pointing from play to seal a memorable win for Tyrone.

The Red Hands will play the winners of Roscommon and Kildare, who play today.