Ronan Glennon, Galway, and Seamus Flanagan, Limerick, in Allianz Hurling League action.
Ronan Glennon, Galway, and Seamus Flanagan, Limerick, in Allianz Hurling League action.

Allianz HL D1A: Impressive win for Galway

Allianz Hurling League Division 1A

Galway 0-27 Limerick 1-18

By Cian O’Connell at the Gaelic Grounds

Seven late points in a row ensured Galway secured the spoils at the end of an entertaining encounter.

It remains early in the year, but nonetheless Galway left the Gaelic Grounds heartened as a gritty display was rewarded with a hard earned win.

The rich contribution made by St Thomas’ duo, Fintan Burke and Conor Cooney, was crucial, while Ronan Glennon, Joseph Cooney, and Cathal Mannion were other prominent figures for Galway.

An hour and a half before throw-in spectators started gathering at the Ennis Road venue adding a sense of occasion to this mid February encounter.

Classics from the Cranberries were being played and a curious crowd wanted to see could Henry Shefflin’s new look Galway truly examine the standard bearers.

A defeat in Wexford meant Limerick wanted to summon a response too so John Kiely’s charges thundered into the contest.

Within four minutes Aaron Gillane had planted a goal and Cathal O’Neill, effective for Limerick, quickly added a point.

Already Galway were being forced to deal with awkward situations. The resilience and determination demonstrated augurs well.

By the time the interval rolled around Galway only trailed by 1-9 to 0-10 which was chiefly due to their efficiency in attack.

From 13 first half attempts Galway struck 0-10, Limerick took 1-9 from 18 so the defiance the visitors’ showed counted for a lot.

Four minutes after the restart Gearoid Hegarty was sent off following an altercation in front of the Mackey Stand.

Still the match continued at a good clip and the teams were deadlocked, 0-20 to 1-17, with 10 minutes remaining.

Then Limerick substitute Tom Morrissey edged John Kiely’s side in front. Galway, though, didn’t allow Limerick score again and seven points on the spin from Conor Cooney (3), Fintan Burke, Joseph Cooney (2), and Johnny Coen proved pivotal. It was a satisfying success for Galway.

Scorers for Galway: Conor Cooney 0-10 (8fs), Cathal Mannion and Fintan Burke (2 sidelines) 0-4 each, Joseph Cooney and Ronan Glennon 0-3 each, Conor Whelan, Tom Monaghan, and Johnny Coen 0-1 each.

Scorers for Limerick: Aaron Gillane 1-6 (4fs), Cathal O’Neill 0-4, Seamus Flanagan and Diarmaid Byrnes (2fs) 0-2 each, Tom Morrissey, Ronan Connolly, Barry Nash, and Gearoid Hegarty 0-1 each.

GALWAY: Eanna Murphy; Jack Grealish, Daithí Burke, Jack Fitzpatrick; Pádraic Mannion, Gearoid McInerney, Fintan Burke; Joseph Cooney, Ronan Glennon; Tom Monaghan, Conor Cooney, Jack Hastings; Eanna Burke, Conor Whelan, Cathal Mannion.

Subs: Gavin Lee for E Burke (48), Darren Morrissey for Fitzpatrick (56), David Burke for Grealish (59), Niall Burke for Hastings (64), Johnny Coen for Glennon (67).

LIMERICK: Nickie Quaid; Seán Finn, Dan Morrissey, Richie English; Diarmaid Byrnes, Barry Nash, Kyle Hayes; Brian O'Grady, William O'Donghue; Gearoid Hegarty, Cathal O'Neill, Darragh O'Donovan; Aaron Gillane, Seamus Flanagan, David Reidy.

Subs: Ronan Connolly for O'Donoghue (5), Tom Morrissey for O'Grady (HT), Declan Hannon for Connolly (49), Graeme Mulcahy for Reidy (64), Adam English for Flanagan (66).

REFEREE: F Horgan (Tipperary).