Bryan Keane/INPHO Liam Collins (file photo)
# Long Wait Over
Galway senior Collins leads the way in All-Ireland Freshers hurling final win
University of Galway saw off the challenge of UL to land their first Fresher’s title in 18 years.

University of Galway 1-26

University of Limerick 0-12 

Caomhán O’Connell reports from Dangan

UNIVERSITY OF GALWAY won their first Fresher’s hurling title in 18 years in Dangan tonight, dispatching University of Limerick with ruthless efficiency.

On a fresh spring evening on the banks of the Corrib, a healthy crowd was treated to a lively and full-blooded first-half. It was UL who started the brighter, winning the early collisions and reeling off two quick scores for an early advantage.

Liam Collins steadied the ship for University of Galway with his own two to level the score.

The home team then took over. Colm Molloy was in imperious form, rattling off four from play. Galway hit 0-7 to Limerick’s 0-1 in a blistering 12 minutes that put them six ahead with half time looming. Only for a fine save from UL stopper Conor Hanly, the margin could have been bigger.

UL kept themselves in the contest largely thanks to some inspired shooting from Sean Rynne, who shot three fine points from the sideline. Hanly and Michael Fitzpatrick also chipped in to ensure they went in at the break only four points down.

However, the visitor’s challenge was extinguished soon after the restart as Galway’s main men came to the fore.

Collins was deadly accurate from frees and Gavin Lee hit two inspirational points from distance. Liam Leen created and converted while Molloy was a menace throughout.

It was Molloy and Collins who combined beautifully for the game’s only goal, which arrived with the game already over as a contest and the hosts well on their way to shooting a remarkable 1-14 in the second half.

Limerick could only muster four points in response and finished the game with 14 men after a late sending off borne of frustration. 

University of Galway scorers: Liam Collins 1-13 (12f); Colm Molloy 0-4; Charlie Mitchell (1f), Gavin Lee, Liam Leen 0-2; Michael Molloy, Cian Daniels, Darragh Neary 0-1.

University of Limerick scorers: Sean Rynne 0-4; Keith Smyth 0-3 (3f); Adam Fitzgerald, Conor Hanly Clarke (1f), Michael Fitzpatrick, Ronan O’ Connor, Anthony Leydon 0-1. 

University of Galway:

1 Tommy Fahy (Tubber/Clare)

2 Cian Shaughnessy (Turloghmore/Galway), 3 Evan Morgan (Balindereen/Galway), 4 Fiachra McDonagh (Moycullen/Galway)

5 Ben Haverty (Athenry/Galway), 6 Gavin Lee (Clarinbridge/Galway), 7 Cian Daniels (Tommie Larkins/Galway)

8 Colm Molloy (Leitrim Kilnadeema/Galway), 9 Darragh Neary (Castlegar/Galway)

10 Michael Molloy (Abbeyknockmoy/Galway), 11 Charlie Mitchell (Kilcormac Killoughey/Offaly), 12 Liam Collins (Cappataggle/Galway)

13 Matthew O’Connor (Balindereen/Galway), 14 Liam Leen (Clarinbridge/Galway), 15 Fergus Hanney (Salthill Knocknacarra/Galway)


Shea Fallon for O’Connor, 45

Shaun Gilligan for Hanney, 45

Eamon Enright for Neary, 57

Paul Kearns for Daniels, 60

Mark O’ Dwyer for Molloy, 60

University of Limerick

1 Conor Hanly Clarke (Kilmallock/Limerick)

2 Joe Hoctor (Carrig/Offaly), 3 Ian McNamara (Killenena/Clare), 4 Evan O’Leary (Ahane/Limerick)

5 Oisin Walsh (Fourmilewater/Waterford), 6 John Conneally (Clooney Quin/Clare), 7 Michael Fitzpatrick (Inch/Tipperary)

8 Ronan O’Connor (Feakle/Clare), 9 Joey Fitzgerald (Monaleen/Limerick)

34 Sean O’Neill (Blackrock/Limerick), 11 Sean Rynne (Inagh Kilnamona/Clare), 12 Sean Killeen (Liscarrol/Cork)

13 Daithí Keane (Beagh/Galway), 14 Keith Smyth (Killenena/Clare), 18 Adam Fitzgerald (Templeglanty/Limerick)


David Kennedy for Killeen, 22mins

Jarlath Collins for Keane, 30mins

Anthony Leydon for A Fitzgerald, 37mins

Gavin Rowsome for J Fitzgerald, 45mins

Liam Dennehy for O’ Neill, 49mins

Referee: Niall Malone

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Caomhán O'Connell
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