Galway Senior Football Championship semi-final
Moycullen 3-14 Tuam Stars 1-15
Moycullen advanced to the Claregalway Hotel Senior Football championship final after hard fought win over Tuam Stars. The old adage that goals win games held true as Moycullen found the net three times to secure their passage to their first Senior final in 43 years.
The teams were tied at a point apiece in the opening stages, when Tuam’s Johnny Trayers gifted Owen Gallagher with a goal chance from a mishit kickout. With shades of Mikey Sheehy v Paddy Cullen, Gallagher lofted the ball over Trayers into the Tuam net.
The Stars responded with a point from Noel Henry, however, from the resulting kick-out Moycullen west down the field to ripple the Tuam net again. This time Dessie Conneely was at the end of a smart move that opened up the Stars defence.
During the first quarter Moycullen oozed confidence as Tom Clarke and Mark Lydon were dominant in the middle of the field and James McLoughlin and Gareth Bradshaw were full of attacking vigour from the wing-back positions. After an additional point from a Niall Walsh free Moycullen led by 2-02 v 0-2. But gradually Tuam found their way back into the game. Points from Ben O’Connell, Jamie Murphy and a Cormac McWalter free saw the gap begin to close.
A Dessie Conneely point from a mark broke the sequence of Tuam scores and James McLoughlin and Conor Bohan added further scores. Ben O’Connell and Dessie Conneely traded scores before the break.
Half-time: Moycullen 2-09 Tuam Stars 0-08
Tommy Carton’s team talk at the interval had it’s desired effect as Tuam tore into their opponents in the third quarter. A basketball style full-court press on Moycullen goalkeeper Seamus Friel led to a turnover and a Tuam goal finished by Gavan Connell. Two Jamie Murphy scores followed and suddenly the gap was back to within two points.
Owen Gallagher broke the momentum of the Tuam scores, but Tuam answered back quickly with a fine point from Shane Curtin, which was quickly followed by another point, this time from Noel Henry. At the second water-break the scoreboard read Moycullen 2-10 Tuam Stars 1-12.
Conrmac McWalters level the game with a fine point on resumption. However, just when it looked like the more experienced Tuam side would push on to win, Paul Kelly got on the end of a fine move and burried it into Johnny Trayers net for a third time this afternoon.
A Gavan Connell point gave Tuam some brief hope, but a Conor Bohan point as the clock ticked into three additional minutes gave Moycullen some breathing space. Two late Dessie Connelly frees added a gloss to the final scoreline.
Full-time: Moycullen 3-14 Tuam Stars 1-15
Scorers: Moycullen: Dessie Conneely 1-05 (3f,2m), Owen Gallagher 1-2, Paul Kelly 1-1, Niall Walsh 0-3 (1m), Conor Bohan 0-2, James McLoughlin 0-1.
Tuam Stars: Cormac McWalter 0-06 (4f), Gavan Connell 1-01, Jamie Murphy 0-3 (1f), Noel Henry 0-2, Ben O’Connell 0-2, Shane Curtin 0-1.