Galway crowned Division 1A league winners after second-half revival defeats Cork

Galway 3-25
Cork 2-23

IT MAY NOT have looked likely at the midway mark but by the end of their trip to Leeside, Galway’s hurlers could reflect on a highly satisfactory afternoon.

Patrick Horgan in action for Cork against the Galway defence.

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

They produced a power-packed second-half display, fuelled by the three goals they stuck past Cork netminder Patrick Collins. A six-point interval deficit had turned into a five-point advantage by full-time.

Victory on the day for Shane O’Neill’s team and they also nailed down top spot in Division 1A as the hurling league draws to a close. If they cross paths with Kilkenny, the victors in Division 1B, during their championship journey, then that game will double up as a league decider

Cork’s new propensity to hit the net, surfaced again in the first half to telling effect. They split open the Galway rearguard three minutes in through Patrick Horgan’s handpass and Conor Cahalane had timed his run well from deep to surge clear and tap home a close-range shot.

The second owed more to a Galway error at the back when Eanna Murphy’s short puckout slipped through the hand of Gearoid McInerney in the 33rd minute. That mistake was seized upon by Jack O’Connor as he gathered possession, slipped past McInerney and drilled in his fourth goal of this league campaign.

Eoin Cadogan in action against Joseph Cooney.

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

The timing was notable, moments after O’Connor had pointed and it proved the last score of the half. Cork retreated at the break with a healthy six-point cushion on the scoreboard, 2-12 to 0-12.

Galway had found their range during that opening period with free-taker Evan Niland popping up with 0-6 while Joseph Cooney and Brian Concannon knocked over a brace apiece. Yet they were chasing the game due to the concession of those goals while Cork found Patrick Horgan regularly in space with their deliveries, he finished the half with 0-5, three of those from play.

Conor Whelan bangs home Galway’s first goal.

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

A Horgan free at the start of the second half did swell Cork’s advantage to seven but Galway’s form soon grew in prominence. Conor Whelan accelerated in from the left flank to bury their first goal in the 39th minute.

They rattled off a series of points to chip away at Cork’s advantage before drawing level at 2-17 apiece by the second-half water break, Conor Cooney knocking a shot to the net.

The Mannion brothers, Padraic and Cathal, were superb in dictating the terms of the game while Fintan Burke was influential in defence and Brian Concannon sparkled in attack. Cork had enjoyed a productive phase to go 2-20 to 2-18 clear, and even after Galway hit three on the spin, it was Darragh Fitzgibbon’s fourth point of an impressive afternoon that tied the teams at 2-21 apiece.

Then came the gamebreaking score with Galway’s third goal. It was a lovely move with the build-up play of Jason Flynn and Concannon, before Mannion was released into space and he struck for the third goal.

That enabled them to keep Cork at an arm’s length, repelling the home team’s late advances as they sought to bag goals.

Scorers for Galway: Evan Niland 0-8 (0-4f, 0-2 ’65) Cathal Mannion 1-2, Conor Whelan, Conor Cooney 1-1 each, Brian Concannon 0-4, Joseph Cooney 0-3, Daithi Burke, Padraic Mannion, Fintan Burke, Sean Loftus, Niall Burke, Jason Flynn (0-1f) 0-1 each.

Scorers for Cork: Patrick Horgan 0-11 (0-8f), Jack O’Connor 1-2, Darragh Fitzgibbon 0-4, Conor Cahalane 1-1, Shane Kingston 0-2, Mark Coleman, Robbie O’Flynn, Billy Hennessy 0-1 each.

Galway

1. Eanna Murphy (Tommie Larkins)

2. Darren Morrissey (Sarsfields), 6. Gearoid McInerney (Oranmore-Maree), 4. TJ Brennan (Clarinbridge).

5. Padraic Mannion (Ahascragh-Fohenagh), 3. Daithi Burke (Turloughmore),  7. Fintan Burke (St Thomas).

8. Sean Loftus (Turloughmore), 9. Cathal Mannion (Ahascragh-Fohenagh).

12. Adrian Tuohey (Beagh), 11. Evan Niland (Clarinbridge), 10. Joseph Cooney (Sarsfields).

15. Conor Whelan (Kinvara), 14. Conor Cooney (St Thomas), 13. Brian Concannon (Killimordaly).

Subs

17. Jack Fitzpatrick (Killimordaly) for Morrissey (44)

19. David Burke (St Thomas) for Tuohey (47)

24. Jason Flynn (Tommie Larkins) for Conor Cooney (53)

23. Niall Burke (Oranmore-Maree) for Joseph Cooney (56)

20. Sean Linnane (Turloughmore) for McInerney (63)

22. Jarlath Mannion (Cappataggle) for Niland (64)

Cork

1. Patrick Collins (Ballinhassig)

2. Ger Millerick (Fr O’Neills), 3. Damien Cahalane (St Finbarr’s), 4. Sean O’Donoghue (Inniscarra).

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5. Tim O’Mahony (Newtownshandrum), 6. Mark Coleman (Blarney – captain), 7. Eoin Cadogan (Douglas). 

8. Luke Meade (Newcestown), 9. Darragh Fitzgibbon (Charleville).

10. Conor Cahalane (St Finbarr’s), 11. Seamus Harnedy (St Ita’s), 12. Shane Barrett (Blarney).

13. Shane Kingston (Douglas), 14. Patrick Horgan (Glen Rovers), 15. Jack O’Connor (Sarsfields).

Subs

25. Alan Cadogan (Douglas) for Barrett (half-time)

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24. Robbie O’Flynn (Erins Own) for Conor Cahalane (53)

26. Alan Connolly (Blackrock) for Harnedy (53)

21. Billy Hennessy (St Finbarr’s) for Meade (63)

23. Declan Dalton (Fr O’Neills) for O’Connor (63)

22. Tadgh Deasy (Blackrock) for Kingston (67)

17. Sean O’Leary-Hayes (Midleton) for Millerick (69)

Referee: Paud O’Dwyer (Carlow)

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