Connacht SFC Final replay: Galway best in the west
Connacht Senior Football Championship Final replay
Galway 3-16 Roscommon 0-14
By John Fallon at Elverys MacHale Park
Galway captain Gary O’Donnell said that eight years without a Connacht title was far too long for the Tribesmen as he collected the JJ Nestor Cup after a superb performance by the Tribesmen.
Galway dominated this final replay at MacHale Park and ran out deserving winners to capture their 45th Connacht title and first since 2008.
The result was never in doubt as Galway took hold of the game in the opening half and they led by treble scores at the break, turning around with a 2-9 to 0-5 advantage.
Both goals were excellent efforts, with Danny Cummins finishing the first to the net after 20 minutes to lead by 1-4 to 0-2 even though they were playing against the breeze.
Roscommon were unable to stop Galway’s control in midfield and the Tribesmen made good use of possession up front with Damien Comer leading the way.
Galway equalled the entire scoring haul from the drawn game when Gary Sice rifled home a goal after 26 minutes.
Ciarain Murtagh offered some resistance for Roscommon, getting four of their five opening half points.
But there was no way back after the restart even though Donie Smith got the opening score of the second-half.
Galway hit four points in succession with even goalkeeper Bernard Power finding the range with a 45.
Roscommon, who finished with 14 after Donie Smith picked up a second yellow card, never gave up but rarely looked like getting the goal required to kickstart a comeback.
Cummins sealed the issue 14 minutes from the end when he blasted home his second goal and Galway’s third with a low shot to the bottom left corner of the net.
And Galway finished in style with a string of points to end their barren spell without a Connacht title and march into the All-Ireland quarter-finals.
But for Roscommon, they will now need to regroup quickly after this big set-back and prepare for the All-Ireland qualifiers next Saturday.
Scorers for Galway: D Cummins 2-1, G Sice 1-2 (2fs), S Walsh 0-3 (2fs), D Comer 0-3, E Brannigan 0-2, B Power 0-1 (1 ’45), E Kerin 0-1, P Conroy 0-1, P Varley 0-1, G O’Donnell 0-1.
Scorers for Roscommon: C Murtagh 0-4 (1f), S Kilbride 0-2, D Shine 0-2, E Smith 0-2, F Lennon 0-1, T Corcoran 0-1, C Cregg 0-1, U Harney 0-1.
Galway: B Power; E Kerin, D Kyne, D Wynne; G O’Donnell, L Silke, G Bradshaw; P Conroy, T Flynn; G Sice, E Brannigan, J Heaney; D Cummins, D Comer, S Walsh.
Subs: A Varley for Walsh (52), P Sweeney for Comer (58, black card), F Hanley for Kyne (66), P Varley for Heaney (67), E Hoare for Sice (70), P Cooke for Cummins (70).
Roscommon: D O’Malley; D Murray, S Mullooly, N McInerney; D Keenan, J McManus, S Purcell; N Daly, C Compton; F Cregg, C Cregg, S McDermott; C Murtagh, S Kilbride, C Devaney.
Subs: D Smith for Keenan (31, black card), E Smith for Devaney (35), F Lennon for Purcell (35), D Shine for F Cregg (42), T Corcoran for Compton (49), U Harney for Mullooly (52, black card).
Referee: C Branagan (Down).