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Limerick finish strongly against Galway to set up All-Ireland U21 final meeting with Kilkenny

Peter Casey and Barry Murphy both netted for the winners.

Cian Lynch with Geared Loughnane after the game Galway's Gearóid Loughnane and Limerick's Cian Lynch after the game. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Limerick 2-23
Galway 2-19

Fintan O’Toole reports from Semple Stadium

LIMERICK CAME GOOD in injury-time to see off Galway in a pulsating Bord Gáis Energy All-Ireland U21 hurling semi-final this evening in Thurles and set up a final clash with Kilkenny, three years after they lost the minor decider to the Cats.

When Conor Whelan cracked home a 47th minute goal, the Galway senior forward’s strike had propelled his team into a two-point advantage, 2-17 to 2-15.

But Limerick would outscore them 0-7 to 0-2 in the finale. Evan Niland set up a nail-biting finish when the Galway substitute pointed a 57th minute free before then Limerick took over as they hit the last four points of the game courtesy of Aaron Gillane, Thomas Grimes, Robbie Hanley and Gillane again.

Pat Donnelly celebrates with Andrew La Touche Cosgrave Limerick's Pat Donnelly celebrates with Andrew La Touche Cosgrave. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Pat Donnelly’s side could have embellished their win further as they hit four injury-time wides but their powerful closing play sealed a place in the decider on 9 September.

From the start Galway pushed Limerick hard, despite the fact that the Connacht side were making their seasonal bow. Brian Concannon and Thomas Monaghan, who both sparkled in attack, struck the first two points of the game for Galway and a late pointed free by Whelan ensured the teams were level at 1-9 to 0-12 at the break.

Limerick’s goal arrived in the 10th minute when Peter Casey bundled the ball to the net and the Na Piarsaigh man was a thorn in Galway’s side early on.

In the second half Limerick exploded from the blocks with a Barry Murphy goal and some excellent play by Barry Nash contributing to them forging a 2-13 to 0-14 advantage by the 37th minute.

Dan Nevin and Robbie Hanley Limerick's Robbie Hanley and Galway's Dan Nevin. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

But Galway refused to wilt and quickly struck 1-2 without reply to draw level, the goal coming from Castlegar’s Jack Coyne when he whipped home a loose ball.

The action ebbed and flowed from there in a highly entertaining second half but the Munster champions timed their run to the finish line well and they utilised their bench to good effect to book a spot in the final

Scorers for Limerick: Aaron Gillane 0-8 (0-4f, 0-2 ’65), Barry Murphy, Peter Casey 1-2 each, Barry Nash 0-4, Thomas Grimes 0-2, Kyle Hayes, Robbie Hanley, Cian Lynch, Andrew La Touche Cosgrave, Conor Boylan 0-1 each.

Scorers for Galway: Conor Whelan 1-3 (0-1f), Brian Concannon, Thomas Monaghan 0-4 each, Jack Coyne 1-1, Dan Nevin 0-2 (0-1f), Jack Grealish, Seán Loftus, Kevin McHugo, Seán Linnane, Evan Niland (0-1f) 0-1 each.

Limerick

1. Eoghan McNamara (Doon)

2. Seán Finn (Bruff)
3. Darragh Fanning (Pallasgreen)
4. Dan Joy (Kilmallock)

5. Ronan Lynch (Na Piarsaigh)
6. Kyle Hayes (Kildimo-Pallaskenry)
7. Thomas Grimes (Na Piarsaigh)

8. Colin Ryan (Pallasgreen)
9. Robbie Hanley (Kilmallock)

10. Aaron Gillane (Patrickswell)
11. Barry Murphy (Doon)
12. Cian Lynch (Patrickswell)

13. Peter Casey (Na Piarsaigh)
14. Tom Morrissey (Ahane – captain)
15. Barry Nash (South Liberties)

Subs

18. Conor Boylan (Na Piarsaigh) for Morrissey (44)
19. Andrew La Touche Cosgrave (Monaleen) for Ryan (44)
24. Jack O’Grady (Knockainey) for Finn (52)
20. Séamus Flanagan (Feohanagh-Castlemahon) for Murphy (59)

Galway

1. Darragh Gilligan (Craughwell)

2. Declan Cronin (Cappataggle – joint captain)
3. Conor Cosgrove (Ardrahan)
4. Ian Fox (Sarsfields)

5. Jack Grealish (Gort)
6. Joe Mooney (Loughrea)
7. Sean Loftus (Turloughmore)

8. Kevin McHugo (Tommie Larkins)
9. Dan Nevin (Cappataggle)

10. Brian Concannon (Killimordaly)
11. Sean Linnane (Turloughmore – joint captain)
12. Thomas Monaghan (Craughwell)

13. Conor Whelan (Kinvara)
14. Cian Burke (Athenry)
15. Jack Coyne (Castlegar)

Subs

17. Ciarán O’Connor (Kilnadeema-Leitrim) for Fox (21)
20. Evan Niland (Clarinbridge) for Linnane (37)
19. Fintan Burke (St Thomas) for Mooney (52)
18. Gearóid Loughnane (Loughrea) for Coyne (inj) (57)
21. Ronan Elwood (Liam Mellowes) for McHugo (57)

Referee: John Keenan (Wicklow)


Source: The42 Podcasts/SoundCloud

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