AIB Connacht Club SFC Final: Corofin retain title
AIB Connacht Club SFC Final
COROFIN (GALWAY) 1-10 PADRAIG PEARSES (ROSCOMMON) 0-7
By Cian O'Connell at Tuam Stadium
Regardless of the conditions or temperature, Corofin simply possess the great sporting ability of finding a way to win.
First time AIB Connacht Club finalists Padraig Pearses brought plenty of passion to Tuam Stadium, but it was Corofin, who had the poise to secure a 10th provincial crown.
Pearses had thundered into the contest in the third quarter drawing level, but when the most demanding questions were being posed Corofin located the answers.
During a trademark burst Corofin reeled off 1-4 without reply including a splendid Liam Silke goal in the 43rd minute.
That was the decisive play as Jason Leonard’s delicious pass released Ian Burke, who subsequently transferred the ball to Silke. The Pearses net danced and Corofin had regained the initiative.
Michael Farragher, Leonard (two), and substitute Colin Brady extended Corofin’s advantage as the polished Galway team made it four Connacht titles on the spin.
The opening period was tight, tense, and frenetic, but Corofin were still doing enough as the standard bearers departed armed with a 0-5 to 0-2 advantage.
Keen to remain competitive Pearses didn’t land a score from play as Corofin tried to stitch their attacking patterns together.
From nine first half shots Corofin mined five scores which was healthier than Pearses two from six efforts ensuring Kevin O’Brien’s outfit led at the break.
A gritty Pearses outfit, roared on by a significant travelling support, did bring some fury, but the Corofin defence was coping well.
After the restart, though, Pearses, with Paul Carey prominent, clipped four of the next five scores to restore parity.
Suddenly Corofin were encountering some difficulty, but they didn’t panic. In the 43rd minute Leonard’s clever pass enabled Burke to provide the assist for Silke’s goal.
Pearses, who had Niall Daly dismissed for a second yellow card in the dying embers, battled until the bitter end, but sufficient Corofin damage had been inflicted.
Another All Ireland semi-final beckons for Corofin.
Scorers for Corofin: Liam Silke 1-0, Jason Leonard 0-3 (1f), Michael Farragher and Gary Sice (2fs) 0-2 each, Dylan Wall, Colin Brady, and Ronan Steede 0-1 each.
Scorers for Padraig Pearses: Paul Carey 0-3 (2fs), Ronan Daly, Niall Daly, Emmett Kelly (45), and Hubert Darcy (f) 0-1 each.
COROFIN: Bernard Power; Liam Silke, Kieran Fitzgerald, Cathal Silke; Kieran Molloy, Conor Cunningham, Dylan Wall; Daithi Burke, Ronan Steede; Gary Sice, Michael Farragher, Jason Leonard; Micheal Lundy, Martin Farragher, Ian Burke.
Subs: Dylan McHugh for Cunningham (28, BC), Darragh Silke for Lundy (44), Colin Brady for C Silke (44), Gavin Burke for Wall (56), Dylan Canney for Steede (59), Ciaran McGrath for Martin Farragher (60), Dean Hynes for Michael Farragher (60+4).
PADRAIG PEARSES: Paul Whelan; Mark Richardson, Anthony Butler, Shane Carty; Gavin Downey, David Murray, Ronan Daly; Niall Carty, Conor Daly; Lorcan Daly, Niall Carty, Paul Carey; Emmett Kelly, Hubert Darcy, Conor Payne.
Subs: Tom Butler for N Carty (20, BC), Sean Fahy for Kelly (53), Alan Duffy for S Carty (54, BC), Shane Mulvey for L Daly (60+3), J Kelly for Payne (60+3).
REFEREE: Eamonn O’Grady (Leitrim).