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Connacht U21FC final: Galway claim title against Roscommon

Extra-time was required in the west, but Galway claimed provincial U21 honours in dramatic fashion.

Image: INPHO/Cathal Noonan

Galway 1-17
Roscommon 2-11

(After extra-time)

A gripping game at Dr Hyde Park eventually ended with a dramatic Galway win as Roscommon were dethroned as Connacht under 21 champions.

There was no shortage of incident during a fascinating contest as Roscommon were left to rue their failure to close out the match in normal time.

Roscommon led by 2-8 to 1-8, but three delightful Shane Walsh efforts for Galway forced extra-time.

Galway then took control in the closing stages with Ian Burke, who finished with six points from play, an influential figure.

It was riveting stuff from the start as only 44 seconds had elapsed when Cathal Mulryan grabbed a lucky goal for Galway.

Roscommon responded instantly with a Donie Smith major as the opening period was played at a blistering pace.

Smith then crafted a 20th minute chance for Finbar Cregg, who netted again for Roscommon and the locals were 2-4 to 1-6 ahead at half-time.

The Tribesmen’s cause wasn’t aided by the 40th minute dismissal of Eoin Walsh following an altercation with Smith, who was red carded himself for a second yellow on 53.

Without their star turn up front Roscommon struggled and Galway exploited this forcing extra-time as Walsh showed his class.

Burke was outstanding late on for Galway, who now face Kildare in what promises to be a lively All Ireland semi-final.

Scorers for Galway: Shane Walsh 0-7 (5fs), Ian Burke 0-6, Cathal Mulryan 1-0, Shane Maughan 0-1, Gary Kelly 0-1, Paul Varley 0-1, Sean Moran 0-1.
Scorers for Roscommon: Donie Smith 1-2 (2fs), Ciaran Murtagh 0-4 (2fs), Finbar Cregg 1-0, Colin Compton 0-2, Enda Smith 0-1, Michael Holland 0-1, Thomas Corcoran 0-1 (f).

GALWAY: Thomas Healy (Corofin); Liam Silke (Corofin), James Shaughnessy (Ballinasloe), Eoin Walsh (Moycullen); Mark Loughnane (St Gabriels), Gearoid Canavan (Salthill-Knocknacarra), Paul Varley (Cortoon Shamrocks); Fiontan O’Curraoin (Micheal Breathnach), Damien Comer (Annaghdown); Cathal Mulryan (Cortoon Shamrocks), Sean Moran (Claregalway), Shane Maughan (St Michael’s); Shane Walsh (Kilkerrin-Clonberne), Adrian Varley (Cortoon Shamrocks), Ian Burke (Corofin).

Subs: Tom Flynn (Athenry) for Silke (28 mins), Conor Rabbitte (Kilkerrin-Clonberne) for Maughan (44 mins), Padraig Cunningham (Ballinasloe) for Moran (45 mins), Philip Ezergailis (Moycullen) for Canavan (49 mins), Gary Kelly (Williamstown) for Comer (59 mins), Damien Comer (Annaghdown) for Mulryan (75 mins), S Maughan (St Michael’s) for A Varley (76 mins), Mattie Heskin (Salthill-Knocknacarra) for Cunningham (78 mins).

David Cunnane was introduced as Galway’s 15th man for extra-time

ROSCOMMON: Tadhg Lowe (Boyle); David Murray (Padraig Pearses), Ross Timothy (St Croans), Ciaran Cafferkey (Western Gaels); Maurice Connaughton (St Croans), John McManus (Roscommon Gaels), Conor Daly (Padraig Pearses); Fintan Kelly (Castlerea St Kevins), Thomas Corcoran (Strokestown); Finbar Cregg (Western Gaels), Cian Connolly (Roscommon Gaels), Enda Smith (Boyle); Donie Smith (Boyle), Colin Compton (Strokestown), Ciaran Murtagh (St Faithleachs).

Subs: Shane Killoran (Elphin) for Cregg (52 mins), C Kilcline (Roscommon Gaels) for E Smith (60 mins), Michael Holland (St Croans) for Kelly (61 mins), Padraig Corbett (Padraig Pearses) for Killoran (66 mins), Cillian Cox (Boyle) for Connaughton (68 mins), Enda Smith for Connolly (75 mins).

Mark Nally (Roscommon Gaels) was introduced as Roscommon’s 15th man for extra-time.

Referee: E O’Grady (Leitrim).

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