Super League: Hull FC 18-13 Salford City Reds
Hull FC (6) 18
- Tries: Arundel, Heremaia, Westerman
- Goals: Tickle, Westerman
Salford (12) 13
- Tries: McGoldrick, Williams
- Goals: Sneyd 2
- Drops: Sneyd
Hull FC warmed up for their Wembley date against Wigan in the Challenge Cup with a hard-earned victory against Salford City Reds at the KC Stadium.
The Airlie Birds trailed 12-6 at the break, with Joe Arundel's converted score in reply to Ryan McGoldrick and Danny Williams tries.
However Aaron Heremaia and Joe Westerman crossed to seal the two points, and a fourth straight win.
Marc Sneyd, who kicked both Salford goals, also slotted a drop goal.
Danny Tickle, who joins Widnes next season, kicked two of the Hull goals, with Westerman landing the third.
Peter Gentle's side, contesting their first final since the 2008 defeat by St Helens, have managed to carry their cup form into the league since stunning Warrington, although they were made to come from behind twice by a spirited Salford.
Reds took the lead when they crossed on the back of a 40-20 kick by Lee Gaskell, and the England Knights' playmaker supplied McGoldrick with an inside ball to score.
However former Castleford three-quarter McGoldrick was at fault when he spilled possession in his own half and Hull took advantage when Arundel tracked Daniel Holdsworth to touchdown.
Salford restored the lead when Ashley Gibson supplied Williams with a sublime flick pass, but Hull responded after the hooter with two crucial finishes.
Hooker Danny Houghton provided the ball to Heremaia for his four-pointer, and after Sneyd's drop goal gave Salford an unlikely chance of victory, Westerman crashed over late on to sink the visitors and continue their winless run in the West side of Hull during the summer era.
VIEWS FROM THE DRESSING ROOM
Hull FC head coach Peter Gentle said:
"We found a way to win and we got the two points. Now we can look forward to the Challenge Cup final. I think that pretty much assures us a semi-final berth now.
"We've got a massive game to look forward to next week now. We set our stall out at the start of the year to compete in both competitions. We have got a few injury issues but we'll see what they're like on Monday.
"Joe [Arundel] has something to do with his hand and Kirk [Yeaman] looked like his ankle. I haven't spoken to the doctor yet, and I imagine we'll find out more about the injuries over the weekend or on Monday. If they're out (of the cup final) someone else will come in and do a good job."
Salford head coach Brian Noble said:
"I thought we deserved more than we got. I thought we played really well.
"In attack we looked really threatening and we had a lot of chances that we didn't take but at least we are making the opportunities. One short kick-off and a break on the line and it's very tough to take.
"I thought Theo Fages and Marc Sneyd controlled the game at times and played well."
Hull FC: Shaul; Crookes, Arundel, Yeaman, T. Briscoe; Holdsworth, Miller; Watts, Houghton, Green, Ellis, Tickle, Westerman.
Replacements: Lynch, Heremaia, Pitts, Whiting.
Salford: Gaskell; D. Williams, McGoldrick, Gibson, Evalds; Sneyd, Fages; Griffin, Owen, Jewitt, Ashurst, Dixon, Wild.
Replacements: Emmitt, James, Davies, J. Walne.
Referee: Thierry Alibert (RFL)