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Galway blitz Roscommon in replay to clinch first Connacht title in 8 years

A superb performance by the Tribesmen brought them a comfortable win at the second time of asking.

Danny Cummins celebrates the first of his two goals.
Danny Cummins celebrates the first of his two goals.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

Galway 3-16
Roscommon 0-14

John Fallon reports from MacHale Park in Castlebar

GALWAY CAPTURED THEIR 45th Connacht SFC title when they brushed aside a shell-shocked Roscommon side in a one-sided final replay in Castlebar.

Kevin Walsh’s men produced a stunning display of attacking football to ease their way to their first Connacht title since 2008. Two cracking goals in a six-minute spell saw Galway lead by 2-9 to 0-5 at the end of the opening half.

Kevin Walsh’s men were rewarded for their direct football and had six different scorers when they opened up a 1-5 to 0-2 lead after just 21 minutes. Danny Cummins got the goal when he drilled the ball low into the bottom right corner, just moments after Damien Comer had a fisted effort to the net disallowed for a square ball.

With Tom Flynn and Paul Conroy on top in midfield, the Galway attack saw plenty of the ball and the Tribesmen were also full of running from deep. Captain Ciarain Murtagh was the only threat up front for Roscommon and he got all but a point of their opening-half tally.

A point from Cummins saw Galway lead by 1-7 to 0-3 when Gary Sice worked his way in from the right before blasting to the roof of the net for a superb goal. That made it 2-7 to 0-3 — Galway equalling their full match tally of 0-13 in the drawn game in just 26 minutes here.

Niall Mcinnerney and Damien Comer Roscommon’s Niall McInerney and Damien Comer of Galway challenge for possession. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

Two late points from Murtagh gave the Rossies some hope before the break but they trailed by treble scores when they turned around.

Donie Smith hit the opening point of the second half for Roscommon but Galway reeled off three points from placed-balls from three different players, with goalkeeper Bernard Power landing a 45 and Shane Walsh and Sice hitting frees.

Roscommon never looked like getting a goal which might have ignited a serious comeback and Galway continued to pick off scores at will. Cummins wrapped up the issue 14 minutes from the end when he raced through to finish to the bottom left corner of the net.

Roscommon’s day of woe was completed when sub Donie Smith was sent off after picking up a second yellow card.

Gary Sice on his way to scoring a goal Gary Sice gets in to score Galway's second goal. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

Scorers for Galway: D Cummins 2-1, G Sice 1-2 (0-2f), S Walsh (0-2f) and D Comer 0-3 each, E Brannigan 0-2, B Power 0-1 (0-1 ’45), E Kerin, P Conroy, P Varley and G O’Donnell 0-1 each.

Scorers for Roscommon: C Murtagh 0-4 (0-1f), S Kilbride, D Shine and E Smith 0-2 each, F Lennon, T Corcoran, C Cregg and U Harney 0-1 each.

Galway

1. Bernard Power (Corofin)

2. Eoghan Kerin (Annaghdown)
3. Declan Kyne (Clonbur)
4. David Wynne (Moycullen)

6. Gary O’Donnell (Tuam Stars)
5. Liam Silke (Corofin)
7. Gareth Bradshaw (Moycullen)

8. Paul Conroy (St James’)
9. Tom Flynn (Athenry)

10. Gary Sice (Corofin)
13. Eamon Brannigan (St Michael’s)
12. Johnny Heaney (Killannin)

15. Danny Cummins (Claregalway)
11. Damien Comer (Annaghdown)
14. Shane Walsh (Kilkerrin/Clonberne)

Subs:

24. Adrian Varley (Cortoon Shamrocks) for Walsh (52)
25. Patrick Sweeney (Killannin) for Comer (58, black card)
17. Finian Hanley (Salthill/Knocknacarra) for Kyne (66)
20. Paul Varley (Cortoon Shamrocks) for Heaney (67)
23. Eddie Hoare (St Michael’s) for Sice (70)
22. Peter Cooke (Moycullen) for Cummins (70)

Roscommon

1. Darren O’Malley (Michael Glavey’s)

2. David Murray (Padraig Pearses)
3. Sean Mullooly (Strokestown)
4. Niall McInerney (St Brigid’s)

12. David Keenan (St Barry’s)
6. John McManus (Roscommon Gaels)
7. Sean Purcell (Boyle)

8. Niall Daly (Padraig Pearses)
9. Cathal Compton (Strokestown)

10. Fintan Cregg (Elphin)
13. Cathal Cregg (Western Gaels)
5. Sean McDermott (Western Gaels)

15. Ciarain Murtagh (St Faithleach’s)
14. Senan Kilbride (St Brigid’s)
11. Conor Devaney (Kilbride)

Subs:

19. Donie Smith (Boyle) for Keenan (31, black card)
20. Enda Smith (Boyle) for Devaney (35)
21. Fergal Lennon (Clann na nGael) for Purcell (35)
18. Donie Shine (Clann na nGael) for F Cregg (42)
25. Thomas Corcoran (Strokestown) for Compton (49)
26. Ultan Harney (Clann na nGael) for Mullooly (52, black card)

Referee: Ciaran Branagan (Down)

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About the author:

John Fallon

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