Leitrim relinquishes hold on Connacht FBD Trophy after Titanic battle with Galway
Leitrim 1-9 Galway 0-13
Leitrim’s Connacht FBD League unbeaten run, stretching back to January 2012, came to an end at the excellently appointed Philly McGuinness Memorial Park in Mohill today as Galway prevailed by a single point, thus qualifying for the 2015 FBD League Final. In what was an absorbing and always interesting match, played in front of an estimated crowd in excess of 1500, Galway at times threatened to pull away only to be reeled in by the determined and well organised Leitrim in team and in the very last play of the match the winners had to pack 12 players in front of the ball as Kevin Conlan looked to engineer a goal from a 20 meter free. As it turned out Conlan’s powerful kick went over the bar and the Tribesmen took the spoils.
It was entirely appropriate on the day that was in it that Mohill’s Alan McLoughlin opened the Scóring with a point in the fourth minute. Points from Patrick Sweeney and Johnny Heaney got Galway on their way before McLoughlin levelled matters.
Points from Gary O Donnell (2), three from Shane Walsh (2 frees) and Danny Cummins to which Thomas Mulvey replied for Leitrim saw Galway open up a five point advantage. An entertaining first half concluded with a trade of points from Galway’s Martin Cody and Leitrim’s Kevin Conlan, a free.
Half time Leitrim 0-4 Galway 0-9
With breeze advantage in the second period Sean McWeeney opened Leitrim’s second half account with a fine score from distance. Almost immediately Galway were awarded a clear cut penalty but Shane Walsh’s firmly struck attempt blazed wide. Taking full advantage of the let off, points from Shane Moran and a Conlon free reduced the lead to two points. In what was indicative of the see- saw nature of this game points from Cody, Cathal Sweeney and Walsh reopened the visitors five point advantage.
Leitrim were not in the mood to give up their title easily and following a long Sean McWeeney delivery, James McGrail broke down the ball and Alan McLoughlin finished to the net much to the delight of the large attendance present. Cody and Ronan Reynolds traded points and with time running out Galway played a lot of possession football in their attempt to keep Leitrim at bay. Following a break down in this possession Leitrim were awarded a free in and Conlan concluded the Scóring, with the full time whistle sounding immediately.
So Galway have qualified for the Connacht FBD League Final 2015 but the Leitrim team and management can be very proud of their contribution to the first match played in Philly McGuinness Memorial Park, a match which was always competitive and one in which the late Philly would have revelled.
Leitrim: Philip Farrelly, Barry Prior, RonanÓgallagher, Niall Woods, Ronan Reynolds (0-1), Gary Reynolds, Sean McWeeney (0-1), Paddy McGowan, Damian Moran, Thomas Mulvey (0-1), Fergal Clancy, Danny Beck, Alan McLoughlin (1-2), James McGrail, Kevin Conlan (0-3). Subs used: Shane Quinn, Shane Moran (0-1), Ronan Kennedy and Ciaran Gilheaney.
Galway: Manus Breathnach, Tom Fahy, Declan Kyne, Colin Forde, Johnny Heaney (0-1), Gary O Donnell (0-2), Gareth Bradshaw, Fiontan O Curraoin, Enda Tierney, Cathal Sweeney (0-1), Shane Walsh (0-4), Martin Coady(0-3), Oisin O Brien, Patrick Sweeney (0-1) Danny Cummins (0-1). Subs used: John Egan, David Walsh, Sean Denvir and Eddie Hoare.
11-Jan-15 by Declan Bohan – PRO