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Waterford dominate Galway to advance to first league semi-final in eight years

Pauric Mahony struck 10 points as the Déise set-up clash with Tipperary.

Image: Ken Sutton/INPHO

Waterford 0-20

Galway 0-12

WATERFORD PROGRESSED TO their first league semi-final for eight years as their tactical system wore down Galway at a blustery Walsh Park.

In front of 3,500 fans, the home side surged nine points ahead at half time with the wind in their favour. They had a wobble in the third quarter but guided by Jamie Barron, Kevin Moran and Tadhg De Burca in particular they emerged with eight points to spare.

Pauric Mahony ended on ten points (nine frees) to swell his 2015 league tally to an amazing 1-66.

Galway skipper David Collins opted to play against the breeze initially. Waterford maximised that advantage and departed nine points to the good (0-14 to 0-5). They imposed their defensive gameplan with thirteen men behind the ball at times and Galway found their pressure play hard to handle.

The Waterford team huddle before the game Source: Ken Sutton/INPHO

Mahony contributed half of that total (six from frees). The hosts had five in hand by the end of the first quarter (0-8 to 0-3) but stretched away after that.

Kevin Moran fired in a huge effort from his own 65 and Austin Gleeson swept over a sumptuous sideline cut. The visitors only registered one point from play through Andy Smith.

The Tribesmen resumed with five unanswered points to shave the arrears down to four after 44 minutes. This purple patch included two from Joe Canning and one apiece by Cathal Mannion and Smith.

Waterford settled into the second half with a Mahony free on 49 minutes. In this critical period, they shot four in a row with substitute Maurice Shanahan on target among three Mahony frees (0-18 to 0-10).

Tadhg De Burca made a couple of awesome catches with Jamie Barron also starring during this spell.

The visitors spent 21 minutes searching for a score. Ian O’Regan saved low from Joseph Cooney with four minutes remaining. Joe Canning recovered two frees for Galway but Waterford closed the case.

Their bench made the necessary impact. Points from Tom Devine and Michael Walsh booked their semi final place in three weeks much to the delight of the home support.

The unbeaten Déise now look forward to the last four against Tipperary on 19 April.

Scorers for Waterford: Pauric Mahony 0-10 (9fs); Kevin Moran, Brian O’Halloran, Austin Gleeson (1 s-l) 0-2 each; Jake Dillon, Tom Devine, Maurice Shanahan, Michael Walsh 0-1 each.

Scorers for Galway: Joe Canning 0-8 (6fs, 1 65’); Cathal Mannion, Andy Smith 0-2 each.

WATERFORD:

1. Ian O’Regan

2. Shane Fives
3. Barry Coughlan
4. Noel Connors

6. Austin Gleeson
5. Tadhg De Burca
7. Philip Mahony

8. Jamie Barron
10. Kevin Moran

14. Michael Walsh
12. Jake Dillon
11. Pauric Mahony

13. Brian O’Halloran
22. Stephen Bennett
15. Colin Dunford

Subs

Maurice Shanahan for Bennett (48)
Tom Devine for O’Halloran (61)
Shane O’Sullivan for Dunford (64)
Gavin O’Brien for Dillon (68)
Martin O’Neill for Pauric Mahony (68)

GALWAY

1. Colm Callanan

5. David Collins
3. Paul Killeen
2. Johnny Coen

4. John Hanbury
24. Padraig Mannion
7. Gearoid McInerney

8. Andrew Smith
9. Iarla Tannian

10. Joseph Cooney
12. Jonathan Glynn
11. Joe Canning

15. Jason Flynn
13. James Regan
14. Cathal Mannion

Subs

Greg Lally for Killeen (H-T)
Niall Healy for Regan (H-T)
Aidan Harte for Flynn (49)

Referee: Brian Gavin (Offaly)

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Tomas McCarthy

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