Corofin the cream of Galway again as they seal five-in-a-row
Champions keep Mountbellew-Moylough at bay despite Cathal Silke’s first half red card
Corofin’s Michael Farragher holds off Eoin Finnerty of Mountbellew-Moylough during his side’s Galway club SFC final win. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho
Corofin 2-14 Mountbellew-Moylough 0-10
Corofin became the third Galway club to claim five senior football titles in a row as Conor Cunningham and Martin Farragher hit two goals in as many second-half minutes to end Mountbellew-Moylough’s hopes of a first crown in 31 years.
The sending off of Corofin’s Cathal Silke in first-half added-time looked to have been crucial as the champions had a four-point lead to protect with 30 minutes into the wind to follow, but instead Mountbellew-Moylough never threatened thereafter.
A couple of frees from the excellent Jason Leonard and Gary Sice pushed Corofin six clear in the early minutes of the second-half, but goals in the 37th and 39th minutes ended any doubt as to the destination of the Frank Fox Cup.
From the start there was plenty of needle in this game. Before the ball was thrown in a fight broke out, and right through the 60 minutes referee Muiris Mac Gearailt had his hands full to keep the peace.
The bright start that Corofin managed was crucial though, and Ronan Steede and Michael Farragher points and a couple of frees from Leonard saw them into an early lead.
At the other end Barry McHugh was Mountbellew-Moylough’s real danger man and he kicked a couple of quick points in reply, but Steede, Leonard and Dylan Wall all added good scores to help their side into a 0-8 to 0-4 half-time lead.
Silke’s sending off was fully deserved as he kicked out at Barry McHugh straight in front of the referee, but instead of pushing hard at the start of the half, Mountbellew-Moylough fell back in their shells, which allowed Corofin to tag on two quick frees.
But the key score came in the 37th minute when Leonard’s hand pass over the top sent Cunningham in on goal and he finished smartly past Brian Donnellan, who had earlier denied Sice with a good save.
Bergin tagged on a point for Mountbellew-Moylough as they sought to launch comeback, but moments later Martin Farragher hit Corofin’s second goal to totally take the steam out of Mountbellew-Moylough’s challenge.
Bergin then became the second player to see red when he clashed with Sice, and with a significant lead to defend Corofin’s possession football easily saw them over the line and to a 19th Galway title.
Corofin: B Power; C McGrath, K Fitzgerald, C Silke; D Wall (0-1), K Molloy, L Silke; Michael Farragher (0-1), R Steede (0-2); C Cunningham (1-0), J Leonard (0-6, 0-4f), G Sice (0-2, 0-1f); Martin Farragher (1-1), I Burke (0-1), M Lundy. Subs: D McHugh for Cunningham (41 mins), D Burke for Molloy (47 mins), J Burke for L Silke (50 mins), C Brady for McGrath (57 mins), B O Donovan for Wall (62 mins), K Murphy for Leonard (63 mins).
Mountbellow-Moylough: B Donnellan; A McHugh, S Moran, M Mannion; C Kenny, J Daly, C Murray; E Finnerty (0-1), J Bergin (0-1); S Boyle, M Daly, P Donnellan (0-2); C Mannion, B McHugh (0-6, 0-4f), N McDonagh. Subs: G Donaghue for S Boyle (34 mins), M Barrett for McDonagh (41 mins), A Sweeney for J Daly (52 mins), C Duffy for Murray (62 mins), J Meehan for C Mannion (62 mins).
Referee: Muiris Mac Gearailt (Micheal Breathnach).